Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $700,000)
The Adult Drug Court for Charles County Circuit Court is applying for the BJA FY22 Adult Drug Court Discretionary Grant Program, Category 1: Planning and Implementation in the amount of $700,000, to implement a post-adjudication Adult Drug Court (ADC), which will offer a coordinated, multi-system approach for individuals with substance use disorders (SUD). The purpose of implementing an Adult Drug Court in Charles County is in response to an increase in drug possession and DUI arrests, alcohol and drug related hospitalizations and deaths, and recidivism among returning citizens. The ADC’s goals include: Finish planning and implementing an ADC program, which adheres to best practice standards; provide participants with rapid access to treatment; ensure participants have access to evidence-based treatment; and prevent and eliminate racial or ethnic disparities. The ADC core members attended National Drug Court Institute Drug Court Planning Initiative (DCPI) training in 2021; however, new staff members have been hired since that time and will benefit from additional training. Staff will participate in DCPI, NADCP, Risk and Needs Triage (RANT), and motivational interviewing training. The ADC’s objectives include: Hire and train new team members; implement a risk assessment tool; hold the first docket by the six-month planning phase; provide case management services to up to 35 participants at a time; provide in-house CBT manualized group; utilize motivational interviewing (MI); increase awareness and access to medication assisted treatment; and collect and analyze access and retention data. The Charles County ADC will serve up to 35 participants at any given time, serving up to 140 participants over the project period. The expected outcomes include: Implementation of an ADC, which will reduce crime, re-arrests, drug use and overdoses among participants; offer rapid access to MAT and other evidence-based treatment services; increase rates of treatment program retention and completion; and offer equal access for all participants. The service area is Charles County, Maryland, and the target population is post-plea Charles County Circuit Court defendants who are Charles County residents, have been diagnosed with a SUD, are non-violent and are determined to be high risk/high needs per the risk assessment tool. Current project partners include Project Chesapeake, the Charles County Health Department, Reconnect, Parole & Probation, the State’s Attorney, and the Office of Public Defender.