Drug courts reduce both drug use and criminal offending, Deputy U.S. Attorney General James Cole told the National Association of Drug Court Professionals today. Cole said research shows that programs that “target individuals who are drug-dependent and at high risk for recidivism have been proven to be especially effective and yield the greatest return on investment.” Cole said governments at all levels now spend nearly $83 billion each year on corrections, and drug courts are one way to control this cost.
Last year, $18 million in federal funds were made to 60 adult drug courts, and funds have been awarded to support 10 new mentor adult court programs, Cole said. There is $41 million available for adult drug court programs this year. “If the treatment is done right, it can return both economic and societal benefits well beyond the actual cost of providing it,” he said.