Every year millions of people fall victim to alcohol abuse. No one intends to abuse drugs, but it all starts in a moment of sheer depression or happiness. The once-a-week thing gradually exceeds the ‘daily’ mark, and then comes a time when you can’t think of anything else other than fulfilling your cravings, no matter the cost. The US alone has 20 million people aging as low as 12 years to older adults involved in illicit drug use. When a person becomes afflicted with addiction, their lifestyle changes altogether. To obtain these illicit drugs, their activities may align more with criminal activities.
In many countries, abusing illicit drugs is illegal. Obtaining them may lead a person to have felony charges imposed on them. Many drug users often engage in criminal activities like picking pockets, stealing stuff to pay for their drugs. The debate whether a drug addict should be in jail or rehabilitation is quiet, and some people even question if the drug courts are working properly or not.
Analyzing their criminal activities like stealing or anything against the law makes sense to hold them for a court trial, but what will happen once they serve their time in prison? Drug addicts are more likely to get involved in drug abuse and repeat the same cycle. Instead of sending drug addicts to jail, local governments can collaborate with reputable rehabilitation centers like the Palm Beach institute to help addicts overcome addiction issues.
Here is what will happen if we put drug addicts in rehabilitation centers than jail.
Helps In Crime Reduction
Sending drug addicts behind bars will only serve as a “time-out” until they get a chance to go out and repeat the cycle. The crimes they commit are more like their efforts to make means to obtain more drugs. Sending them to prison won’t treat their addiction issues, but it will serve as a break. Once they get released after serving their sentence, they will look for the same techniques or find a new way to steal and commit more felonies. Sending them to rehabilitation will serve as a long-term treatment to help them overcome their addiction, and the therapy offered in rehabs will reduce the criminal tendencies of such individuals.
Trouble in Job Opportunities
When released from prison, many people struggle with starting a normal life again; their criminal and prison record dent their journey of finding a stable job and a healthy life. On the other hand, drug addicts serving in rehabilitation centers have more chances of getting better jobs as they come clean and sober. A criminal record deters many employers from offering jobs. However, offering treatment options to first-time offenders can result in positive aspects and help them avoid going unemployed. Prisoners suffer from different mental health issues. Being unemployed after serving their time in jail will only worsen their condition and encourage addictive behavior.
Reducing The Risks
Sending individuals suffering from addiction to rehab is more effective than locking them up in a correctional facility. Treatment programs designed at the rehabilitation centers help these individuals understand addiction’s effects and damages, but jail does not. In addition, offering drug addicts the opportunity to attend rehabilitation programs can promote recovery for those at risk. For instance, if someone new to addiction commits a crime for the first time, sending them to rehab will help treat their addiction.
Swift Transition In Society
Humans cannot exist without societal ties, and socializing is one of the essential parts of our lives. Living in a society and being accepted is what makes us a productive part of society. Often those released from jail suffer the trauma of being looked upon and being mocked. They struggle to start their life and to erase their tarnished image formed in society. On the other hand, offenders can spend their time in rehab for long-term recovery.
Enhances Chances of Being Sober
Incarcerating drug addicts straight away reduces their chances of being sober. Often driven by their impulses of getting more drugs, they may get into crimes, but there are certain moments when they are sober. Putting them in jail will hurt their self-esteem. Putting them in rehab is a better option as they will be free of their temptation. In addition, the therapies will help them stay sober and aware of every move once they get discharged from the rehabilitation centers.
Ignorance about rehabilitation centers has made some people believe that no matter if you end up in rehab or prison, they will leave you back on the streets. The US population makes 5% of the world’s population, yet it houses 25% of the world’s prisoner population. Not every prisoner has committed a serious crime; some are in prison due to felonies like stealing or picking pockets, while others are drug addicts and first-time offenders. Instead of sending the drug addicts to jail, the drug courts can recommend rehabilitation to help them be productive and sober members of society.