National Cross-Site Evaluation of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Treatment Strategies for Criminal Justice Populations

Debra L. Stanley, Central Connecticut State University
David L. Olson, Loyola University of Chicago

Research shows that offenders have an increasingly higher rate of substance abuse and mental health problems than nonoffenders. The movement toward providing a wide range of treatment services to complex criminal justice populations requires a closer examination of treatment strategies and outcomes. In order to provide effective services, we need to recognize that this population is not a homogenous group. This national cross-site study was conducted in an effort to better understand client and programmatic characteristics associated with treatment retention and successful outcomes. The research examines both qualitative and quantitative baseline and discharge data from twelve substance abuse and mental health treatment programs servicing criminal justice populations. Discussion will focus on the variation in client and program characteristics across programs, the predictors of program retention and program failure, and the implications of program outcome management.

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Updated 05/20/2006