Why The Criminal Justice System Must Address Substance Abuse Disorders?
Drug related charges are usually associated with marijuana, hashish, ecstasy, heroin and cocaine and includes drug trafficking, drug possession and drug cultivation. Donich Law frequently handles situations that involves law-abiding citizens without criminal records who are confronted with drug-related allegations.
It is important for the criminal justice system to address the needs of people with substance abuse disorder because they are more likely to be arrested. These people go in and out of prison and face increased risk of death from overdose. Unfortunately, jails are the sites of many Covid-19 outbreaks. Covid-19 and drug overdose have contributed to the more than 400,000 deaths in the USA in 2020.
Aside from the coronavirus pandemic, the USA also faces another public health crisis which is the overdose pandemic. The rates of fatal overdoses in 2020 went up in 40 states. Many cities have reported significant increases in 911 calls and visits to emergency rooms because of drug use that includes opioids and substances like stimulants.
One of the reasons for the increase in drug use is the coronavirus pandemic that resulted to job loss, job insecurity and social isolation. In spite of the increasing need, drug treatment programs were closed due to budget cuts. Those that have remained open offer limited services like in-person therapy, drop-in centers and outreach. There are no protective equipment or essential sanitation supplies to ensure the safety of staff and their patients.
States and local governments have to work with the private sector to address the challenges faced by vulnerable individuals. People who use drugs are more likely to experience homelessness and poverty than the general population. They also face increased risks of contracting Covid-19 because the traditional solutions to address homelessness do not provide adequate opportunity to social distance. Access to essential services must be enhanced to help people with substance abuse disorders.
Even professionals are unexpectedly confronted with drug-related allegations. Donich Law has helped an accused who was arrested for having more than 3 grams of cocaine inside the car. The case was resolved without any criminal record due to the expertise of the law firm that handled the case.