Drug, Mental Health & Veteran's Court

The Norfolk Problem Solving Court Enhancement Project will enhance treatment and recovery support services available to persons with behavioral health disorders participating in Norfolk’s Adult Drug Court, Mental Health Court or Re-entry Court (operating as an adult drug court model).

The population to be served is reflective of the arrestee population in Norfolk City, of which the majority are African-American males who live below the poverty line and are unemployed. The primary drugs of choice amongst participants are cocaine and heroin. The total number of participants proposed to receive services over the life of the three-year grant period is 303.

The Norfolk Circuit Court proposes to use grant funds to enhance treatment services for participants by accomplishing the following objectives: 1) centralizing and expanding legal and clinical screening and assessment for all three courts; 2) expanding cognitive behavioral programming to serve the re-entry court participants; 3) expanding access to, and improving the quality of, intensive outpatient treatment services for all three courts; 4) implementing trauma services to serve participants identified as in need of these services; 5) conducting a process and outcome evaluation of the mental health court; 6) implementing a web-based management information system for the re-entry court docket;7) advancing the quality of services and the skill set of individual providers by providing trauma informed training for practitioners; and 8) increasing the use of incentives and developing sanctioning/incentive grids.

Achievement of the goals and objectives is expected to result in the following: decreased alcohol and drug use among program participants; increased retention rate of participants; decrease the rate of new arrests and new convictions while enrolled in the programs or in the 12 months following program participation; and decrease the number of participants incarcerated in the 12 months following program participation.

Norfolk City and its partners, the Norfolk Community Services Board and the National Center for State Courts, have established a working relationship and possess the proven capability to accomplish the goals of the proposed project. This is evidenced by recent projects evaluating Norfolk’s Adult Drug Court and Norfolk’s Re-entry Court. Initiatives proposed as a result of these evaluations are the driving force for this project. If awarded, Norfolk City and its partners can continue to move Norfolk’s Adult Drug Court, Mental Health Court and Re-entry Court towards producing continual successful outcomes for offenders.