ALACHUA COUNTY, FL – May 2011 is National Drug Court Month. To honor this, the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners will issue a proclamation declaring May 2011, Drug Court Month in Alachua County. Judge Walter M. Green, who presides over Drug Court along with Judge Ysleta W. McDonald, will receive the proclamation on behalf of the Alachua County Department of Court Services program.
Other events include a Drug Court graduation ceremony held on May 6, 2011, at 10 a.m. in courtroom 1B of the Alachua County Courthouse. The ceremony is for participants that have successfully completed the rigorous Drug Court program requirements.
Alachua County’s program has joined other Florida Drug Courts in celebrating their successes by participating in the Florida statewide “Drug Courts Make a Difference” initiative. Throughout the year, Drug Court is working with Alachua County Public Works to do special landscaping and maintenance projects in County parks.
“We have a number of talented and skilled drug court participants,” says Drug Court Supervisor, Frank Owens. “This is an opportunity for each participant to use their skills and talents to make a difference in the community and to better themselves.”
Nationally, more than 2,500 Drug Courts serve to reduce prison costs, protect community safety, and improve public welfare. Drug Court participants must meet their obligation to themselves, their families, and society. To ensure accountability, they are both regularly and randomly tested for drug use. They are required to appear frequently in court, rewarded for progress, and sanctioned for not living up to their obligations. Research continues to demonstrate that Drug Courts produce more positive outcomes than jail or prison, probation, and more than treatment alone.
Alachua County’s Drug Court was one of the first in the nation. It has served almost 2,400 participants in its 17-year history. Funded by the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners, Drug Court works as a partner with the local criminal justice system and community-based treatment and social service agencies.
For more information about Drug Court, contact Frank Owens at 352-384-3199 or firstname.lastname@example.org.