The Drug Court Race: A Study of Graduation Rates Among Caucasians and African Americans in the Office of Drug Treatment Court Programs of the 9th Circuit Court, Kalamazoo, MI
Halpert, Michael T.
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Drug treatment courts have received great praise since 1989, when the first drug court was established. Hundreds have sprung up across the United States, as well as in other countries. However, numerous drug courts are finding that their African American participants are graduating at significantly lower rates than their Caucasian participants. This study draws mainly on issues associated with segregation, such as Goffman's "total institution" (1961 in Walsh 2004), as reasons why African Americans are not able to be controlled, as described by Collins (1982), through solidarity. It then sites reasons why African Americans are less likely to succeed in drug treatment, as described by Bell (1990) and Finn (1994), and draws on their solutions. It then analyzes data on former participants of the Office of Drug Treatment Court Programs of Kalamazoo, Ml, and uses data from current participants in the form of interviews and questionnaires to examine current attitudes of their environment and the drug court staff and judges. Finally, it offers recommendations for minimizing the problem of the gradation differences.
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