Sentencing Reform Debate Shines Light on Lack of Substance Abuse Treatment in Prisons

Arizona Mirror

By Jeremy Duda

Lawmakers’ ongoing discussions about sentencing reform have turned a spotlight on substance abuse treatment in Arizona prisons, and the stark lack of options for the more than three-quarters of inmates who have addiction issues. The Arizona Department of Corrections says 78 percent of the inmates in its custody have a history of substance abuse at the time they’re admitted into prison. But less than 4 percent of all inmates who spent time in Arizona prisons in fiscal year 2019 received treatment while behind bars. 

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