Co-Occurring Disorders and Specialty Court

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A growing number of persons with co-occurring mental and substance use disorders are involved in the criminal justice system, with an associated rise in the number of these individuals appearing before the court. Increasingly, “problem-solving courts” or “specialty courts” (e.g., drug courts, mental health courts, domestic violence courts, community courts, re-entry courts) have been implemented to move beyond case processing to address the underlying issues that brought the defendant to court in the first place. In linking participants with co-occurring disorders to treatment alternatives, judges are testing the ways in which the specialty courts can serve as a therapeutic agent. This source document is intended to provide specialty court staff an overview of the characteristics and needs of individuals with co-occurring disorders, as well as to describe best practices associated with positive outcomes both in treatment settings and the court.

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Co-Occurring Disorders and Specialty Court. The National Gains Center and the Tampa Center for Jail Diversion, a Branch of the National Gains Center, 37 p.