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The role of drug and alcohol rehabilitation in custodial settings

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Street, AM 2012 , 'The role of drug and alcohol rehabilitation in custodial settings', Coursework Master thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Abstract

There is a growing body of evidence that supports the strong causal link between drug use and crime. The interplay between drug use and crime is complex, and as such, simple conclusions about causality and broad generalizations should be avoided. Just as there is no one cause of crime or drug abuse, there is no one "silver bullet" solution in relation to treatment. A range of interventions across a broad continuum is required. There needs to be an acknowledgment of the severity of addiction and the complexity of issues at play in one's life when they are dealing with substance misuse issues. The people that fit into the category of "complex", often lead highly dysfunctional lives where a range of issues are at play including, housing issues, education and employment issues and often a diverse range of family and relationship breakdowns alongside their offending behaviour. They are then expected to navigate their way through a system, which is often as dysfunctional as their own life. There is also a significant body of research in the area of justice reinvestment, which has stemmed from increasing concern regarding the costs of incarceration, particularly for offenders with complex issues. This has resulted in an emergence of alternative methods of working with offenders with co-existing offending and alcohol and drug (AOD) issues.
This study has three main aims. Firstly, to provide an overview of the literature and policy relating to the topic. Secondly to present an analysis of, stakeholder interviews conducted and their relevance to the previous findings. And thirdly, to outline, fundamental considerations that should be taken into account in the processes of developing future policies in the area of AOD treatment in custodial settings.
This thesis explores some of the literature on recent developments that have been incorporated into AOD rehabilitation and treatment models. By exploring the key initiatives that have been adopted in both Australian and international prison settings, the thesis outlines the holistic approach needed to work with offenders with drug use histories, the services that can help address these needs in prison and what level of support is required post-release. In particular, this thesis considers recent developments in corrections policies; both locally and nationally, that are specific to prisoners with AOD issues. The recommendations made in the final chapter of this report are made with consideration to the current literature and in line with the comments made during qualitative interviews conducted with Tasmanian workers.
By examining these issues and building the knowledge base regarding good practice models for offenders with drug use issues in Australia and overseas, this thesis highlights the need for the development of specific policies, practices and initiatives in Tasmania. Drug related crime is increasing, exponentially. This highlights the urgency to get it right when looking at treatment and rehabilitation options for offenders with complex substance misuse issue.

Item Type: Thesis - Coursework Master
Authors/Creators:Street, AM
Keywords: Criminals, Alcoholism and crime, Drug abuse and crime
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2012 the author

Additional Information:

Thesis (MCrimCorr)--University of Tasmania, 2012. Includes bibliographical references

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