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Kauai Drug Court Celebrates National Drug Court Month with Graduation Ceremony

Posted on Jun 20, 2016 in Featured News
Photograph of eight Kauai Drug Court Graduates.

Photo: Recent Kauai Drug Court Graduates stand between Chief Judge Randall Valenciano (left) and Judge Kathleen Watanabe (right) at the Kauai Drug Court’s May 13, 2016 Graduation Ceremony.

Eight graduates were recognized for their achievements at the Kauai Drug Court Graduation Ceremony on May 13, 2016. The ceremony was also a celebration of National Drug Court Month, which acknowledges the achievements of drug court programs in reducing drug use and crime as a cost-effective criminal justice strategy.

Fifth Circuit Chief Court Administrator David Lam explained, “May is National Drug Court Month, and this year’s theme is ‘Criminal Justice Reform in Action.’ The Kauai Drug Court is an excellent example of a program that provides alternatives to incarceration. Through this intensive program, which lasts 18-months at minimum, we are able to rehabilitate individuals as well as restore and reunite families.”

Lam went on to say, “We’d like to take this opportunity to thank Kauai’s dedicated criminal justice professionals and community treatment providers, who work together to ensure seriously addicted individuals receive support, compassion, and evidence-based care. We’d also like to acknowledge our partners – the Friends of the Kauai Drug Court Program. Together, this support team helps us get people back into the community, working, paying taxes, with a real chance for a successful future.”

In Drug Court, participants have access to a court-based intensive outpatient substance abuse treatment program, which also provides intensive case management and probation supervision. Program services include frequent and random drug and alcohol testing, mental health evaluation and treatment, assistance with obtaining employment and housing, random home visits, strict curfew monitoring, and frequent review hearings before the drug court judge. The program offers incentives and rewards to clients who maintain sobriety and are either attending school or training, or are gainfully employed.

The Drug Court clients also perform several community service projects throughout the year. Hanamaulu Beach Park is adopted through the County of Kauai Adopt-A-Park Program, so it is maintained by the Drug Court clients and staff regularly. Food, supplies and incentives are provided by the support group, the Friends of the Kauai Drug Court Program, a Kauai United Way Agency.