A Prison administered by a Non-Profit Corporation could play an important part in building traditional community responsibility and accountability into our prisons
Naming a relatively minor offshoot of drug court a “Community Court”, meant that many drug courts and their progeny never saw their programs as community based, relying on community participation, or being responsible to their communities
The drug court judge creates an environment in which successful drug court “communities” can thrive; where a “drug court team” comes together to institutionalize community-based structures for long-term success.
Interenational Communites need to look to American Drug Courts for inspiration but develop their own programs that accomplish the same goals
Bored Judges and lazy D.A.’s who make the easy deals and disinterested lawyers who force it on their clients are the mark of a conventional criminal justice system.
The Drug Court Act 1998 (NSW), was passed shortly after my initial consultation with the New South Whales Government, and the Sydney Drug Court was the first drug court of its type initiated in Australia.
I’ve always had considerable skepticism about expanding drug courts beyond the U.S. and instead emphasized on what other cultures could devise that would accomplish drug court reform, without actually adopting the model itself.
I visited a Somoan Prison where all offenders went home for the weekend
Ifoga is the term in Somoa for village based restorative justice, where the wrongdoer’s family makes amends to the victim and the victim’s family
In Fiji, I was invited by the prison guards , to participate in a traditional Kava drinking ceremony, (a mildly hallucinatory and addictive substance)
Since the beginning, humans have lived together in “communities”, relying on ”Customary Law”, that dictated acceptable norms of conduct, enforced not by any leadership of the community but rather by the whole.
From the article, “BUILDING TODAY’S COMMUNITY BASED DRUG COURTS” (2005), this observation discusses the success of the drug court in terms of its ability to emulate “traditional community”.
Short pieces I’ve written that advance the theme that drug courts are at their best, an expression of the community’s ability to control behavior.
Governors are calling for drug courts (called reentry-drug courts), designed for the high-risk offender, to be used as a last resort, before long prison terms.
Please help edit a chart showing connections between the courts and prisoners in your state, and the potential for court-based reentry reform across the nation.