Schweitzer's Drug Treatment Courts Expansion
Jun 16, 2017
Proposal would increase funding to existing Drug Treatment Courts in Edmonton and Calgary and expand these facilities to mid-size cities across the province.
Alberta conservatives deserve to know about the policies of their leadership candidates and today Doug Schweitzer announced his support for an increase in funding to the Drug Treatment Courts in Edmonton and Calgary, as well as his plan to expand these facilities to mid-size cities across the province.
Drug treatment courts are a pre-sentence justice alternative for drug addicted offenders that integrates justice, health services and treatment to restore the lives of addicts and empower them to be productive members of the community.
Drug treatment courts have a proven track record of reducing crime and provide a cost savings to government of $3 to every $1 spent. By reducing criminal convictions following a graduation from the program by at least 70%, further savings are passed along to the community.
The average participant cost per week to purchase drugs is $2,400 per week. When considering the street value of stolen goods (1/5th retail value), individuals requiring $2,400 per week costs the community $12,000 per week or $624,000 per year in the cost of stolen goods. These costs to victims, the community, and business are saved when an individual ceases committing crime.
“With the current backlogs in our courthouses and the drug crisis on our hands in Alberta, we need to rethink our approach to the criminal justice system. We are focused on improving access to justice and improving results for victims, communities and offenders. Drug Treatment courts have a cost savings to government of $3 to every $1 spent and have demonstrated a 70% reduction in criminal convictions following graduation from the program. In addition to lowering overall spending and reducing crime, increasing access to Drug Treatment Courts is the right thing to do for Albertans struggling with addictions. That’s why I’m proposing increasing funding to existing Drug Treatment Courts in Edmonton and Calgary, as well as expanding these facilities to mid-size cities across the province.”
- Doug Schweitzer, candidate for leader of the UCP