Drug courts in the American criminal justice system apply to nonviolent criminal offenders with substance use disorder. These also serve people who are driving while intoxicated (DWI), as well as alcohol– and/or drug-dependent fathers and mothers with pending child welfare cases.

As of 2019, there are more than 3,000 federal, state, county, and tribal drug courts operating across the United States, including the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and Northern Mariana Islands.

Drug courts benefit society by processing substance-using persons—including nonviolent criminal offenders—at a cost much lower than what taxpayers will spend in the traditional court setting. Moreover, drug courts have programs that significantly lower recidivism rates, saving more taxpayer money.

Each year, US drug courts serve an estimated 150,000 participants.

Key Components That Define Drug Courts

There are ten (10) key components that define US drug courts, and these are:

  1. Drug courts integrate alcohol and drug treatment services with the processing of justice-system cases.
  2. Using a non-adversarial approach, the prosecution and the defense counsel together promote public safety, while protecting the due-process rights of participants.
  3. Eligible participants are identified early, and they are promptly placed in the drug court program.
  4. Drug courts provide access to a continuum of alcohol, drug, and similar treatment and rehabilitation services.
  5. Abstinence is monitored by the administration of frequent alcohol and other drug testing.
  6. A coordinated strategy governs drug court responses to the compliance of participants.
  7. Ongoing judicial interaction with each and every drug court participant is essential.
  8. Monitoring and evaluation both measure the achievement of program goals and gauge program effectiveness.
  9. Continuing interdisciplinary education is seen to promote effective drug-court program planning, implementation, and operations.
  10. Forging partnerships among the drug courts, relevant public agencies, and various community-based organizations is seen to generate local support, and it enhances the effectiveness of drug-court programs.

With Key Component #5, which requires the regular and periodic administration of alcohol and drug tests, the effectiveness of drug-court efforts on participants will be determined quickly; that is, as soon as the results come out.

Types of Drug Courts That Need Frequent Alcohol and Drug Testing

  • Adult
  • Juvenile
  • Family
  • Veteran
  • DWI
  • Tribal
  • Co-occurring
  • Re-entry
  • Federal District
  • Federal Veterans
  • Campus

Types of Tests That Are Appropriate for Drug Courts

Accuracy is key in every successful test for alcohol and drugs, and this is what drug courts of every type seek in screening kits. And because time is of the essence, administrators want screening process to be simple, with very fast results.

The three (3) types of alcohol and drug tests are:

  • Hair Follicle Drug Test. 
  • Urine Alcohol and Drug Test. This can prove that the subject has imbibed alcohol or taken an illicit drug within a few days of the test.
  • Saliva Alcohol and Drug Test. This is not as invasive as the Urine Drug Test, and it does not require a comfort room for sample collection. It can tell if the subject has used alcohol, marijuana, cocaine, or amphetamine within three days of the test. It can also detect heroin, but only within a few hours of the latest usage.

Alcohol and Drug Testing for Probation Agencies

Like participants in drug courts, individuals under probation and supervised release conditions are legally subject to alcohol and drug testing.

The types of tests that probation agencies use are the same as those of drug courts: hair follicleurine, and saliva.

What American Screening Provides Drug Courts and Probation Agencies

American Screening understands that drug courts may not always have a big budget to perform their tasks, including the frequent administration of alcohol and drug tests. This is why we deliver highly affordable, superior-quality, SAMHSA-compliant screening kits direct from the manufacturer.

We understand as well that employees of the criminal justice system have no time to learn the complexities of alcohol and drug testing, which is why we provide convenient, easy-to-use products that produce accurate results fast.

To keep up with the times, we also offer screening kits for synthetic drugs like K2 (also known as “spice”) and fentanyl.

All our drug testing products conform to SAMHSA standards.

For more information on how American Screening LLC can collaborate on making your organization and community alcohol and drug-free zones, please call our toll-free number: (866) 526-2873 or write us via [email protected]

We are here to serve the public nationwide and internationally!