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Justice Kofi Barnes 4/30/2015.

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Presentation on theme: "Justice Kofi Barnes 4/30/2015."— Presentation transcript:

1 Justice Kofi Barnes

2 4/30/2015

3  a social, health, economic and criminal justice problem  global in nature

4  Drug addicted offenders are caught in the revolving door of drug use/addiction and criminal behavior to support a drug habit.

5  Create a strong partnership between legal case processing and substance abuse treatment - establish a Drug Treatment Court (DTC)

6  December 1998 Bentley J and Barnes K, began Canada's first DTC  As of January 2011, there are 13 DTCs in Canada.  6 DTCs have dedicated program funding: Vancouver, Toronto, Ottawa, Regina, Edmonton and Winnipeg

7  Dedicated funding means there is special funding specifically for the DTC program.  There are seven DTCs without dedicated program funding: Oshawa (Durham), London, Calgary, Moose Jaw, Kitchener, Windsor, Metro West Toronto (Youth) 4/30/2015

8  No dedicated funding means that no special funding is allocated to the DTC program and existing resources are reallocated to establish the DTC  A major drawback, of non funded programs, is the inability to serve as many eligible participants as DTCs with dedicated funding.. 4/30/2015

9  Many non funded programs have a maximum program capacity of between 5 to 10 participants  Funded programs range from 30 to 100 participants 4/30/2015


11  A western Canadian DTC tracked participants for up to 18 months after graduation; over half had remained entirely crime free.  Providing criminogenic treatment in DTC helps clients change their criminal thinking patterns and can reduce recidivism by 70%. 4/30/2015

12  When a comparison was made between one DTC’s participants and court-involved clients of a residential treatment program, 100% of the DTC participants were abstinent at follow-up compared to only 64% of those who had received addiction treatment, without the other supports and supervision of DTC 4/30/2015

13  One DTC reports frequency of drug use declining from an average of 28.5 days per month to only 0.8 days per month during participation in the program. Another in western Canada found about one-third of DTC participants remained clean and sober for a year or longer in the program. 4/30/2015

14  A DTC in Ontario found that, in that city alone, DTC resulted in an annual reduction of $3 Million spent on drugs. Criminal activity required to support that drug use (goods stolen and/or drugs trafficked) is estimated at another $9M, for a total savings of approximately $12M. 4/30/2015

15  Nationwide, for every $1.00 invested in Drug Court, taxpayers save as much as $3.36 in avoided criminal justice costs alone. (American Figures)  When considering other cost offsets such as savings from reduced victimization and healthcare service utilization, studies have shown benefits range up to $12 for every $1 invested. (American Figures) 4/30/2015

16  DTCs help reunite families. Approximately 50% of DTC participants re-establish a connection with supportive family members after entering the program.  DTCs providing employment/education preparation services show impressive outcomes of up to 75% of participants moving on to educational or employment activities. 4/30/2015

17  At least 61% of participants enter DTC with acute or chronic health issues. At any given time as many as two-thirds of participants in some DTCs may be Hepatitis C positive. These issues are addressed through: onsite health services located in some DTCs; community health care partnerships; and intensive case management. 4/30/2015


19  Almost all Canada’s DTCs are adult programs  Only Metro West Toronto accepts youth 4/30/2015

20 Adults:  Non violent offender  addiction to cocaine, crack cocaine, opiates, ecstasy/crystal methamphetamine  Alcohol as a subsidiary or accompanying addiction

21 Youth: (Metro West Toronto)  Abuse of illicit drugs  Addiction to all illicit drugs 4/30/2015

22  Low level drug offence  Low level non drug offence  No or low violence  Addiction must be the primary cause or a significant contributor to criminal behaviour 4/30/2015


24 Partners:  Addiction Treatment Services  Mental Health Services (Durham and Metro West Toronto)  Legal Aid  Court  Participant

25  Probation  Ministry of the Attorney General  Office of Director of Public Prosecutions  Police  Community Partners e.g. job training, housing etc. 4/30/2015


27  No specific legislation for DTC  Program designed to fit in existing legislative framework – Criminal Code  Program specific rules and expectations encompassed by “Rule and Waiver” Forms and bail conditions 4/30/2015

28  Pre existing legislation:  S. 515- bail  s. 720 – for delayed sentencing  S732.1(3)(h) – for creative conditions  s.732.2(3) – allows for early termination of probation  S742.4(1) and 742.4(5)- for changes to optional conditions of a conditional sentence order 4/30/2015

29  Participant must obtain independent legal advice  All applicable legal rights/issues and program expectations and rules contained in Rule and Waiver Form  Participant must sign Rule and Waiver Form 4/30/2015

30  Post Plea (post adjudication):  Guilty plea - sentencing delayed  Non custodial sentence imposed upon completion  Common for both adult and youth 4/30/2015

31  Pre–Plea (Pre adjudication):  Charges withdrawn on completion  Common for youth  Rare for adults - insufficient interest 4/30/2015

32  Arrest  Drug Treatment Court Application  Screening by Crown  Preliminary Assessment by Treatment Provider

33  Group Assessment (Case conference/Pre trial)  Rule and Waiver Form signed  In court interview by Judge  Release on bail for further assessment by the treatment provider

34  Return to Court  Eligible persons enter the program  An assessment period to determine suitability for program (usually 30 days) 4/30/2015

35  Program duration an average of 12 months  Non custodial sentence is imposed on graduation 4/30/2015

36  Most Canadian DTC programs utilise non residential treatment programs  Residential programs are utilised when required  Calgary DTC is the exception – primary focus is residential treatment 4/30/2015


38 HHonesty AAccountability FFocus is on compliance with program requirements

39  Immediate abstinence is not expected  A series of “smart” therapeutically based sanctions and incentives are utilized to ensure compliance and positive behavior modification  Abstinence is a requirement for graduation from the program 4/30/2015


41  A period of complete abstinence from “drug of choice” for example, 4 months.  A period of complete abstinence from other drugs (including alcohol) for example, 1 month.  Some DTCs require abstinence from all illicit drugs 4/30/2015

42  Stable and appropriate housing.  Full time employment or attendance at school.  Appropriate lifestyle changes. 4/30/2015

43  DTC “graduates ” receive non custodial sentences  The sentences imposed usually include a probation order which incorporates conditions designed to encourage and facilitate participation in After Care programs 4/30/2015

44  “Substantial compliance”  Significantly decreased drug use.  Increased social stability.  Acquisition of tools that may assist later in life. 4/30/2015


46  Will a DTC fit within existing legislation? e.g. Canada  Do you need new legislation? e.g. Australia, Jamaica 4/30/2015

47  We have learned to avoid net widening  DTC target populations have been narrowed to offenders for whom traditional processes were not effective  Not every offender or offence is suitable. 4/30/2015

48  We have learned that due to the differences in the cognitive and other development of adolescents versus adults...  Adult and Youth DTC programs must be kept separate and Youth DTC programs must be specifically tailored to address the unique needs of Youth. 4/30/2015

49  As important as sanctions are in ensuring compliance, incentives are extremely important in efforts to instil behaviours promoting recovery 4/30/2015

50  We have also learned that successful DTCs do not operate in a vacuum.  Successful DTCs work in collaboration with various community services and agencies to provided specialized treatment

51  ….these specialized services include: drug addiction treatment, psychiatric and medical treatment, job training, housing, employment etc.  It is clear that a holistic rehabilitative approach yields the best long term results

52  We have learned that to be successful, DTC programs must be flexible and innovative to ensure that their programs continue to address the needs of their targeted populations.

53  We have also learned that successful DTC programs are designed to obtain the best rehabilitative results without compromising public safety

54  We have learned that not all DTCs “are created equal”  There are successful DTCs and unsuccessful DTCs  Research indicates that DTCs that adhere to the key principles of DTCs are five times more successful than those who do not 4/30/2015

55  We have learned that effective adherence to the key DTC principles is an essential perquisite for a successful DTC program  We have learned that these principles should be tailored to address local circumstances and needs

56  Ongoing training crucial at local, national and international levels  Formed CADTCP – 4/30/2015

57  National and international partnerships and exchange of ideas crucial to success  Sharing and benefitting from expertise of other countries e.g. United States, Canada, Chile, Belgium Australia, NADCP ; CADTC; IADTC etc. 4/30/2015

58  Committed to strengthening, developing and expanding the IADTC  Partnerships with international organisations such as CICAD/OAS e.g. this workshop provides us with an opportunity to learn about experiences from Mexico, Chile, Belgium, Canada and the United States just to name a few 4/30/2015

59 .  Sustained funding and optimal resources is the best outcome  Money is scarce and some one is going to want to find out if your program is effective.  Program evaluation is indispensible. 4/30/2015

60  Importance of assigning team personnel for blocks of time to ensure consistency of approach  Importance of finding suitable personnel  Need for operational manual  Need for succession planning 4/30/2015

61  Need for team retreats -cross disciplinary training  Strategies to avoid burn out - peer support  Importance of case conferences/pre-court  Importance of your choice of Judge 4/30/2015

62  We are confronted with a global problem  There are several ideas about how to resolve them  We have learnt that we need an effective communications strategy to send out messages about DTCs effectiveness  This is necessary to maintain the resources DTCs need to be effective 4/30/2015

63  We have learned that no matter the problem or information you need - someone somewhere has it or has encountered a similar problem and may have a solution ;;; CICAD/OAS etc. are always excellent resources 4/30/2015

64  The main reason why we persevere with DTCs despite the invariable obstacles and challenges is because when operated properly they work.  “It’s a known fact: if it weren’t for this program, I’d either be locked up for a really long time – and wouldn’t have learned anything – or I’d be in a grave.” DTC Alumni 4/30/2015

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