The majority of people in prison and jail have a substance use disorder. Despite the promise demonstrated by some treatment programs for people who are incarcerated, just a fraction of the people who need services for substance abuse receive it. Connecting people incarcerated to treatment programs proven to be effective, prioritizing resources for those nearing release, and encouraging community-based aftercare will ensure better outcomes for people released from prisons and jails, and the communities to which they return.

Substance Abuse FAQs

Providing answers on relevant topics concerning Mental Health, Health and Substance Abuse topics.

Recent Posts

A Second Chance at Recovery for Women in Wilmington, North Carolina

RESET, which is funded by a FY2014 Second Chance Act (SCA) grant, is a six-month program designed specifically for women and implemented through a partnership between LINC and the Coastal Horizons Center, a nonprofit behavioral health agency. A typical participant in RESET has a co-occurring substance use and mental disorder and a moderate- to high-risk of committing another crime.

Congress Funds Key Criminal Justice Programs

Congress Funds Key Criminal Justice Programs

Congress approved a $1.15 trillion Omnibus Appropriations bill that would fund three key programs championed by The Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center: the Second Chance Act (SCA), the Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act (MIOTCRA), and the Justice Reinvestment Initiative. The spending bill includes the fiscal year 2016 Commerce, Justice, Science (CJS) Appropriations bill, which provides $28.7 billion to support U.S. Department of Justice programs.

Berrien County, MI, Expands Training, Collaboration Around Juvenile Justice

Berrien County, MI, Expands Training, Collaboration Around Juvenile Justice

The Family Division of the Berrien County Trial Court in Michigan decided in 2001 that its juvenile justice practices simply weren’t working. That meant restructuring the county’s juvenile justice procedures around evidence-based practices, starting by using risk assessments to determine which youth were more likely to commit another offense and thus required more intensive interventions and supervision.

Announcements

Webinars

Risk Need Responsivity 101: A Primer for SCA and JMHCP Grant Recipients

Risk Need Responsivity 101: A Primer for SCA and JMHCP Grant Recipients

This webinar provides foundational knowledge on RNR as well as guidance on understanding and implementing risk assessment tools as a way to direct resources and support recidivism-reduction strategies for criminal justice and social service agencies, practitioners, and policymakers.

Improving Outcomes for Court-Involved Youth with Co-Occurring Disorders

Improving Outcomes for Court-Involved Youth with Co-Occurring Disorders

This webinar provides an overview of three briefs that were recently published by National Center for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice and the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges on the treatment of co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders among youth.

Publications

Municipal Courts: An Effective Tool for Diverting People with Mental and Substance Use Disorders from the Criminal Justice System

Municipal Courts: An Effective Tool for Diverting People with Mental and Substance Use Disorders from the Criminal Justice System

This report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration examines the opportunities and challenges associated with municipal court diversion, and outlines elements for effective practice: identification and screening; court-based clinician; recovery-engagement strategies; and proportional response.

Drug Testing and Crime-Related Restrictions in TANF, SNAP, and Housing Assistance

Drug Testing and Crime-Related Restrictions in TANF, SNAP, and Housing Assistance

Federal social assistance programs, including TANF, SNAP, and federal housing assistance programs, have an restrictions on eligibility based on drug felonies and other criminal records. This report from the Congressional Research Service provides an overview and discussion of these restrictions and their impact. In addition, it also discusses the use of drug testing in federal assistance programs.

Recent headlines

Congress Eschews Conventional Wisdom on Criminal Justice Reform

Conventional Senate wisdom says similar bills should be paired together for the best chance of receiving floor time. But lawmakers from both sides of the aisle have decided the country’s criminal justice system needs repair quickly. So to avoid creating an ominously large political target, elected officials are disentangling the massive topic into three separate, and highly overlapping, threads: sentencing reform, mental health and opioid addiction.

State Prisons Turn to Telemedicine to Improve Health and Save Money

It enables corrections officers keep potentially dangerous inmates behind bars for treatment rather than bearing the cost and security risk of transporting them to hospitals. And because more doctors are willing to participate, it makes health care more available for inmates.

Governors Get Smarter on Medicaid

Thus far 30 states and the District of Columbia have expanded their Medicaid programs and 20 have not, although several of them are debating whether to do so.

Connecticut’s Second-Chance Society

Last February, Mr. Malloy announced his “Second Chance Society” initiative, which is aimed at reducing the number of people going into prison and making it easier for those already in to get out and have a chance at a law-abiding life.