Justice and Public Safety
December 4, 2018

The following statement was given today in the House of Assembly by the Honourable Andrew Parsons, Minister of Justice and Public Safety:

Minister Parsons Announces Start of Drug Treatment Court Pilot Project

Mr. Speaker, following a tremendous amount of work by our government, working group and advisory committee, the new Drug Treatment Court pilot project in St. John’s has been established.

This court is intended for offenders with serious drug addictions, who commit non-violent, drug-motivated offences. It brings together judicial supervision and treatment services for substance abuse and establishes long-term supports outside the criminal justice system. This problem-solving approach offers an alternative to traditional criminal justice responses by addressing the underlying issues that contribute to crime by offering court-monitored treatment, random and frequent drug testing, incentives and sanctions, intensive case management and social services support.

Mr. Speaker, I have thanked them before but it bears repeating. I would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the hard work of the working group, particularly John Duggan, as well as the provincial court judiciary, whose commitment and dedication to this project was essential in establishing this court. I would also like to recognize the advisory committee, which consisted of various government agencies and the private bar. A critical component to the court’s success will be the continued collaboration among community partners.

Mr. Speaker, our government recognizes the important role of restorative justice and continues to explore innovative approaches to the administration of justice.

Thank you.

2018 12 04                              2:25 p.m.