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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 211636 Find in a Library
Title: Substance Abuse and Drug Courts: The Role of Social Bonds in Juvenile Drug Courts
Journal: Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice  Volume:3  Issue:4  Dated:October 2005  Pages:287-315
Author(s): Amna Saddik Gilmore; Nancy Rodriguez; Vincent J. Webb
Date Published: October 2005
Page Count: 29
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the effect of the Maricopa County Juvenile Drug Courts and social bonds on the desistance of delinquent behavior and successful completion of the program.
Abstract: To address the drug problem, specialized drug courts were created to divert offenders from regular case processing to treatment programs. These juvenile drug courts involve intensive monitoring of juveniles, in addition to individual and family counseling, and court appearances. Most studies conducted on juvenile drug courts have not been characterized by theoretical explanations of delinquency. Social control theory has been identified as providing a useful framework for the study of drug courts with the monitoring of offenders’ family, school performance, and peer relations. This study drew on social control theory and relied on official juvenile court data and narratives from probation case files to examine the effect of drug court treatment on the desistence of delinquent behavior in Maricopa County, AZ. Social bond indicators, such as changes in guardianship, school attachment, employment status, and delinquent peers are included in the analyses to assess how they influence offenders’ treatment progress and drug court outcomes. The study examined the effectiveness of drug court treatment versus standard probation and the relative effect of familial, educational, and social indicators in juvenile offenders’ court treatment. Data were received from the Maricopa County Juvenile Drug Courts with the dependent variables consisting of delinquent offending, drug use, and program completion. Study findings indicate that drug court participation had no effect on reducing delinquency during treatment, and actually, juveniles in drug court were more likely to test positive for drug use during treatment and less likely to complete program requirements. Social bonds were determined to play a significant role in desistance of delinquent behavior and program completion.
Main Term(s): Juvenile drug courts
Index Term(s): Juvenile delinquency prevention; Juvenile drug abusers; Juvenile drug treatment; Juvenile drug use; Program evaluation; Social bond theory
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