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Legal Status at Intake and Posttreatment Incarceration: 12-Month Follow-up of Methadone Maintenance Treatment

NCJ Number
Journal of Maintenance in the Addictions Volume: 1 Issue: 4 Dated: 2000 Pages: 27-43
Matthew L. Hiller Ph.D.; D. Dwayne Simpson Ph.D.; Kirk M. Boone Ph.D.; George W. Joe Ed.D.
Date Published
17 pages
A follow-up study of 710 individuals admitted to methadone maintenance in Texas compared individuals with and without a legal status (parole, probation, or awaiting trial) at treatment intake on the basis of pretreatment characteristics, behavior during treatment, and incarceration after treatment.
The participants received methadone maintenance at three publicly funded programs in Corpus Christi, Dallas, and Houston. They entered the programs between April 1990 and August 1993. The research followed up the participants 12 months after discharge from treatment. Results revealed that individuals with a legal status had more extensive arrest histories and greater educational and employment deficits. However, the group with legal status did not differ from the group with no legal status in terms of attendance at treatment counseling sessions, illicit drug use, or criminal behavior. Twenty-six percent of the participants were incarcerated at the 12-month follow-up period. Those with a pretreatment legal status were five times more likely than the others to be incarcerated. The analysis concluded that individuals who were under criminal justice supervision at admission to treatment did not differ from other individuals in their performance during treatment, but their pre-existing legal status placed them at higher risk for incarceration both during and 12 months after treatment. Tables and 52 references (Author abstract modified)