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

U.S. Senate Approves 21st Century Cures Act

U.S. Senate Approves 21st Century Cures Act

Within the wide range of initiatives the omnibus bill supports are several significant criminal justice reform measures related to the issue of mental health, including the enactment of the Comprehensive Justice and Mental Health Act and the reauthorization of the Mentally Ill Offender Treatment and Crime Reduction Act.

New England Conference Highlights Regional Approach to Reentry

New England Conference Highlights Regional Approach to Reentry

The conference, which was hosted by United States attorneys of the six New England Districts—Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine— uplifted the region’s approach to reentry efforts. Rather than focusing on individual locales, service providers, policymakers, and correctional agencies throughout New England collaborate to ensure a unified approach.

Medication-Assisted Treatment: Federal Investment and Local Implementation

Medication-Assisted Treatment: Federal Investment and Local Implementation

“[These] actions represent further steps to expand access to treatment, prevent overdose deaths, and increase community prevention strategies,” said the Obama Administration in an announcement in March. “These actions build on the president’s proposal for $1.1 billion in new funding to help every American with an opioid use disorder who wants treatment get the help they need.

Hamilton Project Panel Stresses Importance of Reentry Programs

Hamilton Project Panel Stresses Importance of Reentry Programs

Individual panelists offered differing perspectives on what work needs to be done to reduce recidivism, but the group agreed that there are a number of straightforward, nonpartisan measures that state and local governments can adopt in order to reduce recidivism and increase public safety.

Announcements

Apply Now: Centers of Excellence Program

Apply Now: Centers of Excellence Program

The Centers of Excellence program aims to strengthen the nation’s capacity to produce a quality healthcare workforce whose racial and ethnic diversity is representative of the U.S. population.

Webinars

2016 JMHCP Grantee Orientation Webinar

In this webinar, CSG Justice Center staff explain the training and technical assistance opportunities and resources available to grantees. Staff from the Bureau of Justice Assistance will also participate and provide an overview of the post-award grant management requirements.

Developing Sustainability, Success Stories from the Field

Developing Sustainability, Success Stories from the Field

Grant funding often provides seed money to help agencies launch new programs. However, once the grant has expended, finding additional funds to sustain a program can be challenging. This webinar discusses how other funding streams can be leveraged, and partnerships developed, to help sustain a program.

Medication Assisted Treatment in Jails and Community-Based Settings

Medication Assisted Treatment in Jails and Community-Based Settings

This webinar is designed for Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program and Second Chance Act Reentry Program for Adults with Co-occurring Substance Use and Mental Disorders grantees and features speakers from three different grant programs that are utilizing MAT in jail and community-based settings for people involved in the justice system.

Sharing Information between Behavioral Health and Criminal Justice Systems

Sharing Information between Behavioral Health and Criminal Justice Systems

This webinar was presented to Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program and Second Chance Act Co-Occurring Substance Use and Mental Disorders grantees discussed strategies for developing information sharing collaborations between criminal justice and behavioral health systems.

Publications

Overlooked: Women and Jails in an Era of Reform

Overlooked: Women and Jails in an Era of Reform

This report offers a portrait of women in jail, explores how jail can deepen the societal disadvantages they face, and provides insight into what drives women’s incarceration and ways to reverse the trend.

Recent headlines

Out of Prison, Uncovered

Nationwide, 16 state prison systems have no formal procedure to enroll prisoners in Medicaid as they reenter the community, according to a survey by The Marshall Project. Nine states have only small programs in select facilities or for limited groups of prisoners, like those with disabilities. These 25 states collectively release some 375,000 inmates each year.

Helping Ex-Inmates Stay out of the ER Brings Multiple Benefits

In a randomized control trial looking at 200 recently released prisoners in San Francisco, it was found that bringing that population to see doctors significantly reduced emergency room visits and hospitalizations. That lessens the strain on emergency departments, and the cost burden that emergency treatment puts on the health care system.

Declaring Addiction a Health Crisis Could Change Criminal Justice

For the first time ever, a sitting U.S. surgeon general has declared substance abuse a public-health crisis. This new approach—if it were to become widespread—could profoundly impact the criminal-justice system, where addicts often end up.

U.S. ED Secretary Sends Letter to States Calling for an End to Corporal Punishment in Schools

In the short term, students who receive this form of punishment show an increase in aggressive and defiant behavior–the opposite of the intended outcome. In the long term, students who experience physical punishment in school are more likely to later grapple with substance abuse and mental health issues, including depression, personality disorders and post-traumatic stress.

Opioid Addiction Declared a Public Health Emergency in Virginia

Virginia’s health commissioner announced Monday that the opioid addiction crisis is an official public health emergency in Virginia and created a standing order that anyone can obtain a rescue drug at pharmacies to treat overdoses.

Obama Grants 79 Prison Sentence Commutations

The prisoners are mainly non-violent drug offenders, a group the White House had hoped to reach through criminal justice reform bills that have stalled in Congress.