Drug Court Highlighted as Model Program for Criminal Justice Reform

The 20th Circuit Court is honored to announce that the Adult Drug Treatment Court (drug court), a specialty program for non-violent felony offenders with acute substance use disorders, was selected from over 2,000 drug courts in the United States to be featured in a nationally distributed webinar aired by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). View the webinar.

The webinar is part of a monthly webinar series produced by SAMHSA called “Road-to Recovery,” and addresses topics related to recovery from substance use disorders.  The theme for May is criminal justice reform, for which the work of our drug court was highlighted and paired with commentary from a panel of nationally recognized experts on substance abuse treatment and criminal justice reform initiatives, including the Deputy Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy.  The drug court is highlighted at minutes 24:00 and 43:18 respectively.

Numerous national studies have clearly indicated that drug courts are effective at reducing recidivism, reducing drug use, are more cost-effective than incarcerating offenders, and improve a participant’s quality of life.  “We see considerable personal growth with the participants in our drug court.  Participants get sober and enter recovery, find jobs, secure housing, repair relationships, and become more positive and stable community members in Ottawa County” says Honorable Mark A. Feyen, drug court judge.

A study conducted by Grand Valley State University in 2014 demonstrates the adult drug treatment court significantly reduces new crime and repeated drug use among high risk and high need offenders.  Notably, drug court participants were 73% less likely to commit a new crime within three years of discharge from the drug court when compared to a similar group of people who were sentenced to traditional probation.

The drug court is funded by time-limited grants annually awarded by the Michigan Supreme Court, Department of Justice, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

From the Ottawa County Courts
20th Circuit | 58th District | Probate