Providing Adult Drug, Behavioral Health, and Veteran Accountability Court Programs
Over the course of the past two decades, drug courts have evolved into an accepted alternative sentencing method and have morphed into accountability courts to address various aspects of the criminal justice system. While the foundation has remained constant, empirical research has allowed practitioners to identify specifics that have resulted in positive outcomes. The Fulton County Accountability Courts have embraced the benchmarks established for accountability courts and have committed the program to the principles established as best practices in the industry.
The past twenty years has created a great deal of research and statistical data from which best practices have been identified. Some of the most recent research has identified two key findings.
Accountability courts cost approximately $5,000 less per participant than incarceration.
- Participation at any level reduces recidivism.
The mission of the Fulton County Accountability Court is to provide a court supervised alternative sentencing program to those citizens facing a felony level charge in Fulton County, and who suffer substance abuse and/or mental health issues. Furthermore, the court will reduce recidivism, crime occurrence, reduce the cost to the community, and improve the quality of life for those participating. The court is committed to returning participants to the community as model citizens.
The Fulton County Accountability Court's core values are embodied in the acronym as follows:
H Honesty in our spoken words and actions,
O Open and transparent in our practices,
P Professional in our business and personal lives,
E Ethical in our behavior.
The Fulton County Accountability Court came into existence in 1997. The accountability program is an intensive outpatient treatment program that provides an opportunity for those with substance use and mental health issues to get treatment and avoid jail time if they successfully complete the 18 to 24-month program. In addition to treatment, the participants receive judicial monitoring, peer mentoring services, assistance with housing, job training, GED/literacy services, and transportation assistance during the early stages of treatment. When participants first start, they attend from 8:30 am to 12:00 pm 4 days per week for Drug and Veteran Court and 2 to 3 days per week for BHTC. The target population includes individuals who have been charged with non-violent felony offenses who have challenges with substance use and/or mental health challenges.
The Fulton County Accountability Court will accept referrals from justice partners and even the person who finds themselves charged with a felony. We are happy to answer your questions! However, it is strongly recommended that a person discuss his/her options with legal representation. A formal referral form can only be accepted from a person’s attorney, a member of the Public Defender’s Office, a member of the District Attorney’s Office, or another legal/criminal justice partner. Please see below for resources and contact information.
The Fulton County Accountability Court is supported by the Hope and Healing Foundation of Fulton County which works tirelessly to support the participants of all the Court’s programs. Please visit the Foundation’s website here to see how you can assist!