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NCJ Number: 219289 Find in a Library
Title: Twisting Arms or a Helping Hand?: Assessing the Impact of 'Coerced' and Comparable 'Voluntary' Drug Treatment Options
Journal: British Journal of Criminology  Volume:47  Issue:3  Dated:May 2007  Pages:470-490
Author(s): Tim McSweeney; Alex Stevens; Neil Hunt; Paul J. Turnbull
Date Published: May 2007
Page Count: 21
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This study compared drug treatment outcomes among court-mandated treatment participants and voluntary treatment participants in England.
Abstract: Results indicated that the court-mandated drug treatment participants faired just as well as the voluntary drug treatment participants in terms of significant and sustained reductions in drug use, injecting risk, and offending behaviors. Improvements in mental health were also observed for both groups. Moreover, the reductions in drug use and criminal behavior were sustained between the 6 and 18 month followup interviews. Other findings revealed that retention rates among court-mandated and voluntary participants were roughly equal. The authors observe that while the results are encouraging for court-mandated drug treatment programming, there is room for improvement for the aftercare and settlement of both court-mandated and voluntary drug treatment clients. The authors also note that the expectations of treatment should be realistic and should not be viewed as the one perfect solution for dealing with drug misuse and drug-related crime. Participants were 157 individuals who entered community-based drug treatment at 1 of 10 research sites across London and Kent, England between June 2003 and January 2004. A full 57 percent of the participants (89 individuals) were court-ordered to undergo this community-based drug treatment. Participants were interviewed at intake, within 2 weeks of starting treatment, and again at 6, 12, and 18 months after program completion. Interviews were standardized and focused on physical and psychological health, housing, education, employment, relationships, substance use, offending, victimization, pressure to be in treatment, self-efficacy, and motivation to change. In-depth individual and focus group interviews were also conducted with 38 health and criminal justice practitioners involved in the development, implementation, or delivery of the drug treatment program and 57 criminally involved drug users who were mandated to treatment. The analysis focused on comparing the outcomes of the court-mandated treatment participants to those of the voluntary (comparison) participants. Data were analyzed using logistic regression models. Figures, table, footnotes, references
Main Term(s): Comparative analysis; Drug treatment
Index Term(s): Court orders; England; Voluntary treatment
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