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Substance Abuse Programming falls into the categories of primary intervention and supportive services. Interventions include health, psychiatric, social, and psychological services (e.g., counseling) designed to address the multiple risk factors contributing to the offenders’ substance abuse. They target the offenders’ motivation to change, ability to maintain abstinence, as well as intrapersonal and interpersonal concerns. The basic goal of substance abuse intervention is to reduce the risk of harm that results from continued use of substances that affects individual clients, their families, and their community. Effective substance abuse programs also address offenders’ criminal thinking and provide basic problem solving skills. Substance Abuse interventions for juvenile offenders include prevention, education, and treatment; they are consistent with a developmental framework and are inclusive of the multiple systems that the youth is part of (e.g., school, family, and communities).
Substance Abuse Treatment refers to a broad range of services aimed at reducing or eliminating the use of alcohol and/or drug use and abuse. This substance use and abuse is considered in the context of how it contributes to the presenting issues that lead to the offender to enter the criminal justice system. Programs fall into categories of primary intervention based on supportive services. The Center for Substance Abuse Treatment emphasizes the necessity of both acknowledging the unique aspects of treating substance abuse in offender populations and understanding the needs of this population. Confounding issues of anger, hostility, shame, and guilt often accompany substance abuse issues within offender population. General clinical strategies of working with offender-clients include interventions to address criminal thinking and to provide basic problem-solving skills. Specific programs may vary in emphasis of these general strategies.
Overview of National Standards: The following is a publication by the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment that provides guidance for treatment of adults in the criminal justice system. This document provides recommendations and best practice guidelines to counselors and administrators based on the research literature and the experience of seasoned treatment professionals. It includes screening and assessment information, placement guidelines, treatment planning, major treatment issues and considerations for offenders, adapting substance abuse models to specific populations, application in diversion and pretrial settings, issues specific to jail, prison, and community corrections populations and environments, and recommendations for program development.
Evaluation of Substance Abuse Treatment Programs: The following document provides an evaluation of chemical dependency offender programs for the state of Minnesota. This document reviews the literature related to chemical dependency programs and focuses on the programs offered through the state of Minnesota in evaluation. Findings provide guidance in identifying predictors of positive outcomes in chemical dependency treatment within a correctional environment.