BJS: Bureau of Justice Statistics

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Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)
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Drugs and Crime Facts

Drug treatment under correctional supervision

On probation | In jail | In State and Federal prisons


On probation

Almost all probationers (99%) had one or more conditions to their sentence required by the court or probation agency. Among such conditions were drug testing and substance abuse treatment.

Conditions of sentences of adult probationers, by severity of offense, 1995
             
  Severity of offense
 
Condition of sentence Total Felony Misdemeanor

             
Any condition 98.6 % 98.4 % 98.9 %
             
Alcohol/drug restrictions 38.2 % 48.1 % 23.7 %
  Mandatory drug testing 32.5   43.0   17.1
  Remain alcohol/drug free 8.1   10.4   5.2  
             
Substance abuse treatment 41.0 % 37.5 % 45.7 %
  Alcohol 29.2   21.3   41.0  
  Drug 23.0   28.3   14.8  
       
Number of probationers* 2,558,981 1,470,696 982,536
 
Note: Detail may not sum to total because probationers may have more than one condition on their sentences and totals may include items not shown in the table.
*Excludes 61,579 probationers (2% of all adults on probation) for whom information on conditions of probation was not reported.
 
Source: BJS, Characteristics of Adults on Probation, 1995,
NCJ 164267, December 1997.

Drug or alcohol treatment was a sentence condition for 41% of adults on probation; 37% had received treatment. An estimated 29% of probationers were required to get treatment for alcohol abuse or dependency and 23% for drug abuse. Drug treatment was required nearly twice as frequently among felons as misdemeanants (28% compared to 15%).

Thirty-two percent of all probationers were subject to mandatory drug testing -- 43% of felons and 17% of misdemeanants.

Source: BJS, Characteristics of Adults on Probation, 1995, NCJ 164267, December 1997.

Seventeen percent of all probationers reported having participated in a drug treatment program during their probation sentence. The percentage rose as the severity of prior drug use increased. Of those with any past drug use, 25% had received treatment, and the percentage grew to 42% of those using drugs in the month before the offense. A majority of those using drugs at the time of offense reported participation in drug treatment during their current sentence.

Of the individual drug treatment programs, the most common among all probationers
were --

  • 11% narcotics/cocaine anonymous groups
  • 8% drug rehabilitation, and
  • 6% outpatient clinics.

The types of treatment programs did not differ according to the level of the
probationers' past drug use.

For probationers using drugs in the month prior to the offense, the most common programs were --

  • 27% narcotics/cocaine anonymous,
  • 20% drug rehabilitation, and
  • 17% outpatient clinics.

Nearly a third of alcohol- or drug-involved probationers were currently enrolled in an alcohol or drug treatment program when interviewed. Half of alcohol- or drug-involved probationers said they were treated on their current sentence to probation, and about two-thirds had been treated at some time in their lives.

Treatment history of alcohol- or drug-involved probationers, 1995
       
Participated in an
alcohol or drug
treatment program
Percent of alcohol- or drug-involved probationers

  Ever 64.2 %
While incarcerated 10.2  
Before current sentence 39.8  
During current sentence 53.6  
Currently in program 30.1  
  Number of probationers 1,390,572  
 
Note: Probationers may have received treatment at multiple times in the past.
 

Source: BJS, Substance Abuse and Treatment of Adults on Probation, 1995, NCJ 166611, March 1998.

Since their sentence began, over 40% of DWI offenders on probation who reported using drugs at the time of their offense had participated in drug treatment or programs: 13% of those who reported prior drug use, and 22% of those who were regular drug users.

Source: BJS, DWI Offenders under Correctional Supervision,
NCJ 172212, June 1999.

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In Jail

Substance abuse treatment includes detoxification, professional counseling, a residential stay, or maintenance drug programs. Other programs include Alcoholic Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), and other self-help groups, and drug or alcohol education or awareness. Nearly two-thirds of jail inmates who were substance dependent or abusers had participated in treatment or programs in the past. Fifty-two percent had participated while under correctional supervision, up from 43% in 1996.

Among inmates who had been using alcohol or drugs in the month before the offense, participation in treatment or programs while under correctional supervision rose from 39% in 1996 to 47% in 2002.

In 2002, 20% of convicted inmates who were under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the offense had participated in treatment/programs after entering jail, up from 17% in 1996. In each year, participation in self-help programs (13%) was the most common activity, followed by education programs (over 5%).

Eighteen percent of jail inmates who met the criteria for drug dependence or abuse and 17% who met the criteria for alcohol dependence or abuse had received treatment since their admission to jail.

Source: BJS, Substance Dependence, Abuse, and Treatment of Jail Inmates, 2002, NCJ 209588, July 2005.

Of DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) offenders in jail who reported using drugs at the time of their offense, 25% reported some type of drug treatment since their admission, as did 7% of those who reported any prior drug use and 9% of those who were regular users.

Source: BJS, DWI Offenders under Correctional Supervision, NCJ 172212, June 1999.

Veterans

In 1996 veterans' in local jails substance abuse treatment histories were similar to those of other inmates. Since their admission, veterans in local jails reported the same level of participation as nonveterans (10% of both) in substance abuse treatment or programs. Veterans (48%) were also about as likely as other inmates (42%) to report participation in any drug treatment or other programs at some time in their past.

Source: BJS, Veterans in Prison or Jail, NCJ 178888, January 2000.

In state and federal prisons

Prisoners' participation in drug treatment and other drug programs

Among state inmates who used drugs in the month before the offense, 39% reported taking part in drug treatment or other drug programs since admission, up from 34% in 1997. federal inmates with recent drug use histories reported a similar increase in drug treatment and program participation, from 39% in 1997 to 45% in 2004. 

These increases were the result of an increased percentage of recent drug users taking part in self-help groups, peer counseling and drug abuse education programs. Among state prisoners who had used drugs in the month before their offense, participation in these drug abuse programs since admission rose from 28% in 1997 to 34% in 2004. In federal prison, the comparable figure rose from 32% to 39%. Over the same period, participation in drug treatment with a trained professional remained stable. Among recent drug users in state prison, 14% took part in drug treatment since admission, compared to 15% in 1997. Among federal prisoners who had used drugs in the month before the offense, the percentage taking part in drug treatment was 15% in both years.

As a result of growing state and federal prisoner populations during this period, the increases in the number of inmates taking part in drug abuse programs were more dramatic. In 2004, an estimated 269,200 state prisoners who had used drugs in the month before their crimes reported taking part in drug treatment or other drug programs since admission to prison. This represented a one-third increase since 1997. Among federal inmates, the number of recent drug users who took part in drug treatment or other drug programs rose by nearly 14,000, or 90%, since 1997.

Source: BJS, Drug Use and Dependence, State and Federal Prisoners, 2004, NCJ 213530, October 2006.

Veterans

The substance abuse histories of veterans in state and federal prison were similar to those of other inmates in 2004. More than half of prisoners in state and federal prison reported ever receiving substance abuse treatment, regardless of veteran status. Since admission to state prison, veterans (32%) and nonveterans (34%) reported similar levels of participation in substance abuse treatment or programs. In federal prison nearly equal percentages reported taking part in treatment since admission (30% of veterans, 34% of nonveterans).

Source: BJS, Veterans in State and Federal Prison, 2004 , NCJ 217199, May 2007.

Treatment facilities

After nearly doubling between 1990 and 1995, the number of correctional facilities that operated primarily as alcohol or drug treatment institutions increased 8% from 233 in 1995 to 249 in 2000. Confinement facilities with drug or alcohol treatment as a main function rose from 192 to 200 community-based facilities with this specialty rose from 41 to 49.

More than 80% of the 200 confinement facilities functioning primarily as drug or alcohol treatment facilities in 2000 were state operated, about 10% were private contract facilities, and 8% federal institutions. Community-based facilities were nearly evenly split between privately operated institutions (55%) and state facilities (45%).

Overall, in 2000, 96% of the Nation's correctional facilities offered counseling. Both drug and alcohol counseling were available in about 90% of the facilities. This pattern was similar among federal, state, and privately operated facilities.

Total number of correctional facilities under state or federal authority that provided counseling programs to inmates, midyear 2000
           
    All facilities
   
Characteristics Total Federal State Private

All facilities 1,668 84 1,320 264
           
With counseling programs 1,603 77 1,284 242
  Drug dependency,   counseling, awareness 1,480 77 1,175 228
           
  Alcohol dependency,   counseling, awareness 1,464 77 1,162 225
   
Source: BJS, Census of State and Federal Correctional Facilities, 2000, NCJ 198272, August 2003.




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