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Initiative To Develop and Test Juvenile Drug Treatment Court Guidelines


In response to both the prevalence of youth with substance use disorders in the juvenile justice system and the inconclusive research findings regarding the effectiveness of juvenile drug courts, OJJDP launched a two-phase initiative to develop and test research-informed guidelines for juvenile drug treatment courts (JDTCs)1 that promote effective practice and high-quality service delivery for justice-involved youth with substance use disorders.

1 A juvenile drug treatment court is a calendar or docket that provides specialized treatment and services for youth with substance use or co-occurring mental health disorders who have come in contact with the juvenile court. OJJDP uses the term "juvenile drug court" when referring to the historical, broad implementation of this type of approach, prior to the establishment of the JDTC Guidelines. OJJDP recognizes that many courts emphasized the treatment approach well before the establishment of the guidelines. OJJDP uses the term "juvenile drug treatment court" when specifically discussing courts aligned with the JDTC Guidelines.

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Date Created: March 18, 2020