Rehabilitation Program Introduced To Keep Drug Offenders Out Of Jail

As 'second chance' for criminals

Article heading image for Rehabilitation Program Introduced To Keep Drug Offenders Out Of Jail

A new County Court scheme will see drug offenders given a “second chance” through rehabilitation programs.

The Alcohol Drug Treatment Court is expected to be introduced today which will allow 70 people who were struggling with addiction at the time of their crimes to enter an intensive drug rehabilitation program.

This will include crimes which generally carry prison terms including drug trafficking and theft.

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In order to become eligible for the program, offenders are required to plead guilty to their accused crimes. 

The program will see participants regularly drug tested and will require them to attend regular meetings at County Court along with one on one appointments with counsellors. 

Senior Lawyer at the drug and alcohol court Naomi Newbound told the Herald Sun that the rehabilitation program lessens the likelihood of reoffending.

“We’re working to drive down crime by tackling the underlying causes of offending – providing people with the specialist support and treatment they need to get their lives back on track,” she said.

Ms Newbound said the program is in no way an easy alternative to prison for substance abusers.

“To sit in jail and pass the time is probably easier," she said. 

The Melbourne Magistrates Court have launched a similar program which has seen a 90 percent drop in reoffending from participants.

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Georgie Marr

30 May 2022

Article by:

Georgie Marr

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