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Problem Solving Courts - Research Proposal Example

This paper seeks to discuss aspects of problem solving courts. The paper, assuming the role of a law clerk, will explore the history and background of drug courts, the intended purpose and goals of the courts, intended target populations and measures of success of problem solving courts. History and background of drug courts Drug courts developed from initiatives of state and local government systems to establish a more effective solution to substance abuse. Its development is traced to three decades ago. The number of substance abuse offenders at the time was high with a majority being minor offenders. Most of the suspects, for instance, were never involved in serious crimes such as violence or drug trafficking. A research initiative into reducing drug abuse cases and its associated criminal activities then recommended adoption of a treatment approach to these minor drug offenders by subjecting them to mandatory legal procedures for rehabilitation. Further recommendations for incorporation of the rehabilitator initiatives into the judicial system then generated the drug courts, a system of problem solving courts. Efforts have since been made to treat minor drug offenders in the drug courts instead of the formal judicial procedure (Franco, 2010). ...
purpose and goals One of the intended goals of the drug courts has been to relieve pressure in the systems that have primarily been caused by high rates of drug related arrests. The high number of suspects meant pressure on judges and an ultimate

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pressure on prison facilities. The overcrowding in the prisons prompted initiatives to reduce the number of prisoners. As a result, the drug courts were identified to rehabilitate offenders as a long term and effective approach solving the drug problem through coercion. Another goal of the drugs court is to ensure an effective treatment process in which the judicial system is in charge. This induces a legal obligation on the offender to comply with the prescribed treatment as an alternative punishment to imprisonment. Consequently, the drug courts’ objectives are directed towards ensuring effective treatment of victims of drug abuse who are identified with minor offences instead of sending them to prisons (Tiger, 2011). Intended target population The drug courts targets the universal population subject to eligibility criteria. As a result, both minors and adults are a target population of the drug courts. This is consistent with the courts’ objectives of providing treatment to drug offenders and reducing pressure in the prisons and jails. There is however a difference in eligibility criteria between the adults and the juveniles. The courts particularly target the entire juvenile population who are subjected to treatment based on involvement in drug abuse. Any minor who is identified with drug abuse therefore qualifies for subjection to the drug courts. The target population with respect to adults is however more specific as dependence on drugs must be identified. The target population of the drug courts is therefore the


PROBLEM SOLVING COURTS Introduction Problem solving courts represents a deviation from the formal judicial procedures and consequences to establish a rehabilitative and reform oriented process to offenders who either are charged with drug abuse or are associated with mental health problems or abnormal behaviors…
Problem Solving Courts
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