The Experiences of Young Adult Offenders Who Completed a Drug Court Treatment Program

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Abstract

Although there has been a proliferation of studies on the effectiveness of drug court programs, these studies are largely quantitative in nature. Little is known about the experiences of persons who participate in drug court. In this study, we aimed to fill this knowledge gap by exploring experiences of young adults who completed an adult drug court treatment program. Nine semi-structured interviews were conducted, typed into a word-processing program, and then entered into a data analysis software program. Using grounded theory strategies, analysis revealed several emergent themes, which are presented chronologically to provide a narrative of study participants’ experiences before, during, and after the program. Findings provide insights on how participants perceive drug courts and experiences that might facilitate or impede completion of drug court programs. Our findings are particularly important for drug court professionals as they attempt to develop appropriate recommendations for best practices and new policy initiatives.

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