Drug Courts Are Not the Answer: Toward a Health-Centered Approach to Drug Use

Report March 21, 2011

Drug Courts Are Not the Answer finds that drug courts are an ineffective and inappropriate response to drug law violations. Many consider the continued proliferation of drug courts to be a viable solution to the problem of mass arrests and incarceration of people who use drugs. Yet this 2011 report finds that drug courts may not reduce incarceration, improve public safety, or save money when compared to the wholly punitive model they seek to replace. The report calls for reducing the role of the criminal justice system in responding to drug use by expanding demonstrated health approaches, including harm reduction and drug treatment, and by working toward the removal of criminal penalties for drug use.

Read our Report: Drug Courts Are Not the Answer

A young woman holds a sign that says "End the Drug War."

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