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If Drug Treatment Works So Well, Why Are So Many Drug Users in Prison?

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  • Harold Pollack
  • Peter Reuter
  • Eric L. Sevigny
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    Abstract

    This paper examines the effectiveness of drug courts to reduce the size of the incarcerated drug-offending population using data from the Survey of Inmates in State Correctional Facilities and the Survey of Inmates in Local Jails. We find that very few of those entering state prison in 2004 or jail in 2002 would have been eligible for drug diversion through state drug courts. The policy implication is that drug courts and other diversion programs require substantial redesign if they are to contribute to a reduction in the incarcerated population.

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    File URL: http://www.nber.org/papers/w16731.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 16731.

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    Date of creation: Jan 2011
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    Publication status: published as If Drug Treatment Works So Well, Why Are So Many Drug Users in Prison? , Harold Pollack, Peter Reuter, Eric Sevigny. in Controlling Crime: Strategies and Tradeoffs , Cook, Ludwig, and McCrary. 2011
    Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:16731

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    1. Anirban Basu & A. David Paltiel & Harold A. Pollack, 2008. "Social costs of robbery and the cost-effectiveness of substance abuse treatment," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(8), pages 927-946.
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    Cited by:
    1. Nancy Nicosia & John M. MacDonald & Rosalie Liccardo Pacula, 2012. "Does Mandatory Diversion to Drug Treatment Eliminate Racial Disparities in the Incarceration of Drug Offenders? An Examination of California’s Proposition 36," NBER Working Papers 18518, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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