May is National Drug Court Month

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25 Years of Service

 This May, Drug Courts throughout Louisiana will join over 2,800 Drug Courts nationwide in celebrating National Drug Court month.  Twenty –five years ago, the first Drug Court was launched in Miami, Florida, igniting a significant change in how America responds when a drug addict or alcoholic is arrested. 

National Drug Court Month arrives at a time of renewed interest in criminal justice reform.  National, state and local leaders are looking to reform the criminal justice system to see how best to reduce our costly overreliance on incarceration.  Nationally statistics support that 75% of individuals who complete Drug Court are not re-arrested.   Louisiana is home to 49 Drug Courts and is setting a national standard for efficient crime justice policies that reduce recidivism and save money. 

Nearly 5 years ago–in November of 2009—The 25th Judicial District Court-opened the doors of the adult Drug Court Program. In this program serious drug-addicted individuals remain in treatment for long periods of time while under close supervision.  Drug Court participants must meet their obligation to the Court, themselves, their families and society.  To ensure accountability, they are regularly and randomly tested for drug use, required to appear frequently in court for the judge to review their progress, rewarded for doing well and sanctioned for not living up to their obligations. 

Since implementation, the 25th JDC has celebrated the graduation of 19 individuals who successfully completed the intensive Drug Court program. 

On June 10, 2014-the 25th JDC will hold their 4th Graduation Ceremony—honoring 3 additional graduates –who have earned the right to graduate.  The public is invited to attend this inspirational event, along with state and local officials, and friends and family of the honored current and past graduates.

Since the establishment of the 25th JDC Drug Court in November of 2009, this Court has witnessed the positive changes in the lives of the clients in the Drug Court Program.  Drug Courts Work!  The program saves tax-payer’s money and provides hope toward a better life for those clients who would ordinarily be serving time behind bars.  The statistics on the success of the Drug Court Programs nation-wide speak for themselves. “  —The Honorable Kevin D. Conner, Judge

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