APA Fellow testifies on drug and veterans treatment courts
The testimony referenced several meta-analyses demonstrating the effectiveness of drug courts in reducing recidivism
On July 19, APA Fellow Dr. Douglas Marlowe, Chief of Science, Law and Policy at the National Association of Drug Court Professionals testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism in a hearing entitled “Drug and Veterans Treatment Courts: Seeking Cost-Effective Solutions for Protecting Public Safety and Reducing Recidivism.” Dr. Marlowe’s testimony (PDF, 53KB) referenced several meta-analyses demonstrating the effectiveness of drug courts in reducing recidivism (up to 45 percent in the best drug courts). Additional data cited in Dr. Marlowe’s testimony suggested that drug courts were also cost effective; when higher-risk drug offenders were targeted the average return on investment was $3.36 for every $1.00 invested. Furthermore, Dr. Marlowe told the Subcommittee that when other indirect cost-offsets were taken into account the economic benefit to local communities ranged from $3,000-$13,000 per drug court participant. The hearing follows the recent release of a report from the Department of Justice titled “The Economic Impact of Illicit Drug Use on American Society (PDF, 4.77MB),” which covers the economic impact of drug use related to criminal activity as well as added healthcare costs and lost productivity.