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Alcohol and Drug Treatment for the Incarcerated

by James Heller 29. October 2009 11:03
The state of California is still struggling with what to do about alcohol and drug treatment for the incarcerated.  It makes sense when the facts point to success in rehabilitating those who commit crimes and have problems with alcoholism or drug addiction.  Programs could be improved, but the fact that officials see worth in alcohol and drug treatment is a good sign.

Some may say that at this point in California’s history, we take what we can get.  But in this case we know that these programs actually save money for California.  When we treat the problem of alcohol dependence and drug addiction in these individuals, the drain they once placed on the economy goes away and they contribute to society.

Healthcare, incarceration and other costs have been reduced through some of these programs as much as 5 to 1 over necessary treatment costs.  This is not big news to California legislators and, in fact, was predicted when treatment instead of incarceration began.  So to reduce funding for these programs would be to go in the wrong direction.

State Legislators need to be told by the public that we want these programs because they not only work, but they also have a positive effect on the economy.  It is not time to be satisfied with what we have.  The fact that State officials see the value in these programs means they will respond to contact from the public.  You may find your representatives’ contact information here.

The following excerpt is from an article in Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Weekly.  This is a fine journal for learning about alcohol dependence and drug addiction.  The full article offers some detailed insight into current action in the California State budget as it relates to alcohol and drug treatment for the incarcerated.

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The return to custody rate for offenders completing both in-prison and community-based treatment in fiscal year 2005-2006, the years covered by the report, was 21.9 percent, compared to 39.9 percent for all offenders one year after parole.  Two years after parole, the recidivism rate was 35.3 percent for offenders who participated in both kinds of treatment, compared to 54.2 percent for all offenders.

For female offenders, treatment worked particularly well. One year after parole, only 8.8 percent of female offenders completing both kinds of treatment were returned to custody, compared to 30.1 percent of all female offenders. After two years, 16.5 percent of women receiving treatment had been returned to prison, compared to 43.7 percent of all female offenders.

For male offenders, 25.4 percent of those who had received both kinds of treatment were returned to custody one year later, compared to 41.2 percent of all male offenders. Two years after parole, the return-to-custody rate was 40.4 percent for men who received both kinds of treatment, compared to 55.6 percent of all male offenders.

-- Source: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/110575473/home --

Tarzana Treatment Centers in Los Angeles provides court-related services as part of our commitment to integrated behavioral healthcare in alcohol and drug treatment.  If you or a loved one needs help with alcohol abuse or drug addiction, please call us now at 888-777-8565 or contact us here.

Southern California Locations for Alcohol and Drug Treatment
Tarzana Treatment Centers has locations all over Southern California in Los Angeles County. Other than our central location in Tarzana, we have facilities in Lancaster in the Antelope Valley, Long Beach, and in Northridge and Reseda in the San Fernando Valley.