April 20th, 2011
There are approximately 60,000 inmates in New York state prisons that require drug treatment or drug counseling. If given drug treatment or drug counseling, these men and women will have a greater opportunity to live drug free when they are released from prison.
The New York State Department of Corrections recently conducted a three year study of drug treatment and alcohol treatment programs available to prisoners in New York State. The results of the study were that New York prisons are providing no treatment, or extremely poor treatment, to the 60,000 prisoners in the system who need these services.
Drug and Alcohol Deficiencies
The New York state prison system does not screen prisoners based on their drug and alcohol problems. Some prisoners need intensive programs, while others need less intensive programs. There is no way to ascertain this information. This causes a waste of valuable resources.
Overcoming Drug and Alcohol Problems
In addition to the screening for the severity of drug or alcohol abuse, the prisoners must also be screened as to their level of motivation to help themselves deal with these issues. Overcoming drug and alcohol addictions requires motivated individuals. When prisoners finish their sentences, there should be follow up treatment programs in their local communities. This will help prevent recidivism. It is much less expensive to treat an individual for alcohol or drug addiction than to house him or her in prison at the taxpayers expense.
The treatment programs should be based on a three phased system. Programs should start with the six month residential treatment program. During the course of this program, the prisoner should live in separate dorm facilities than the general population. Thereafter, they should be integrated into the general population of the prison. After being released from prison, there should be follow up treatment programs.
Alcohol and drug addiction are society’s problems. Warehousing individuals who suffer from these addictions is much more expensive then treating them.
Our office provides aggressive legal representation for individuals charged with the following criminal offenses: drug offenses; domestic violence; misdemeanors; felonies; assault and battery; juvenile defense; shoplifting; burglary; driving while intoxicated (DWI); weapons possession; sex crimes; white collar crimes and violent crimes. In addition, we assist our clients in obtaining bail and in dealing with traffic tickets. Contact us for a free consultation.