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If Drug Treatment Works So Well, Why Are So Many Drug Users in Prison?

If Drug Treatment Works So Well, Why Are So Many Drug Users in Prison?

Chapter:
(p.125) 3 If Drug Treatment Works So Well, Why Are So Many Drug Users in Prison?
Source:
Controlling Crime
Author(s):
Harold PollackPeter ReuterEric Sevigny
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226115139.003.0004

This chapter first describes the changing patterns of drug misuse in the United States over the last forty years, which is necessary to understand the challenge now facing the criminal justice system. It then reviews what is known about the effectiveness of drug treatment in reducing crime at the individual level, and discusses interventions aimed at diverting drug-involved offenders from incarceration, such as drug courts, Proposition 36 (the largest diversion program in operation, even though it is restricted to California alone), and coerced abstinence/mandated desistence in Hawaii. Next, the chapter presents the empirical analysis of the surveys of jail and state prison inmates, showing the limited potential impact of drug courts under current eligibility rules. A commentary is included at the end of the chapter.

Keywords:   drug courts, drug users, drug use, criminal behavior, incarceration, imprisonment, crime reduction, crime control

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