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A Study of family drug treatment courts in the United States and the United Kingdom: Giving parents and children the best chance of reunification

Levine, G. – 2012

Report on an Australian study of family drug treatment courts (FDTCs), written in preparation to establish the first FDTC in Australia. Presents background on the problem of parental substance use and notes the need for these courts. Author visited several FDTCs in the U.S. and the only existing one in the U.K. Discusses how FDTCs address parental substance abuse, the key features of FDTCs, and how they differ from criminal drug courts, noting the FDTC focus on parental recovery and child safety. Summarizes research on the effectiveness of FDTCs. Explains how FDTCs operate, including the use of drug testing and rewards/sanctions. Discusses the benefits of FDTCs, and recommends that they be implemented in Australia.