Jeffrey A. Butts and John Roman (Editors) (2004). Juvenile Drug Courts and Teen Substance Abuse. Washington, DC: Urban Institute Press.
We do not know whether juvenile drug courts are more effective than traditional juvenile courts in reducing substance abuse among young offenders. Practitioners, researchers, and policymakers should think carefully about the role drug courts should play in the juvenile justice system.
Juvenile justice officials across the United States are embracing a new method of dealing with adolescent substance abuse. Importing a popular innovation from adult courts, state and local governments have started hundreds of specialized drug courts to provide judicial supervision and coordinate substance abuse treatment for drug-involved juveniles. The number of youth affected by these new courts is relatively small, but the programs are spreading rapidly and their presence is changing how practitioners and policymakers think about adolescent drug use. Despite the increasing popularity of juvenile drug courts, researchers have only begun to test whether they stop or reduce teen substance abuse more effectively than other programs. Juvenile Drug Courts and Teen Substance Abuse is the first book to examine the ideas behind juvenile drug courts and explore their history and popularity.