Wilmington, N.C., — Treatment courts exist to lead those with substance use and mental health disorders in the justice system into a life of recovery and stability. Since 2019, the National Drug Court Resource Center, housed in the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s Social Science and Applied Research Center, has provided treatment court practitioners with resources to assist with their lifesaving work.
For the first time since 2016, court counts across the U.S. and territories have been updated and are available via NDCRC’s new interactive map. It reflects the number of courts by state and county as of December 2020 and is designed to be utilized by treatment court practitioners, stakeholders, researchers and others to inform their work.
Visitors can also explore and compare data from the U.S. Census Bureau, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health and the Uniform Crime Report. The NDCRC is also in the process of collecting juvenile treatment court numbers with the assistance of the National Association of Drug Court Professionals and the Center for Court Innovation.
The map was developed by NDCRC staff and allows for the visualization of data through digital dashboards and allows users to obtain real-time insights into the datasets.
“The NDCRC interactive maps were created to allow users to explore and compare datasets from a variety of federal sources in relation to the prevalence of treatment courts,” said Ron Vetter, professor of computer science. “For example, users can observe the total number of treatment courts by state including opioid prescription dispensing rates and overdose death rates, as well as many other factors.”
In addition to the map, the NDCRC website offers a moderated discussion forum, a calendar of professional development opportunities, webinars and podcasts.
The U.S. Department of Justice has granted a total of $2.4 million to sociology and criminology professors Kristen DeVall and Christina Lanier for their work with the NDCRC from 2019 to the present. The current cooperative agreement extends through September 2022.