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NEWS ADVISORY

Judicial Branch, State of New Hampshire

CONTACT:
Laura Kiernan
Communications Director
lkiernan@courts.state.nh.us
603-271-2646 ext 2359

 

CONTACT INFORMATION FOR DRUG AND MENTAL HEALTH COURTS
AVAILABLE ON JUDICIAL BRANCH WEBSITE

CONCORD--Information about drug and mental health courts in New Hampshire is now available on the judicial branch website.

Specialty court programs for non-violent offenders with substance abuse or mental health issues are available at a limited numbers of Superior and District court locations in New Hampshire. These specialty courts combine community based treatment programs with strict court supervision and progressive incentives and sanctions.

A state task force on drug and alcohol abuse reported in 2007 that while New Hampshire is ranked as one of the healthiest state's in the nation, substance abuse rates in the state are higher than in many other areas of the country. The task force cited a national survey on drug use and health which found that nearly 10% of the population in New Hampshire had reported alcohol abuse or dependence and almost 11% reported drug abuse or dependence, compared to the national averages of 7.59% for alcohol abuse or dependence and 9.22% for drugs. The task force also found that New Hampshire's publicly funded treatment system only had the capacity to serve 10 percent of the people who needed support.

State corrections officials estimate that anywhere between 50% - 80% of their population have drug dependency issues. "Justice Reinvestment in New Hampshire," a 2010 report by the Council of State Governments Justice Center, found that 75 percent of the parole revocations in New Hampshire during a three month period were due to parolees involvement with drugs or alcohol; 41 percent failed to access or complete a treatment program to address their need for substance use or mental health.

 

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