FAQ’s

What is a Drug Treatment Court (DTC)?
How does the Calgary Drug Treatment Court (CDTC) program work?
Is this program for me?
How can this program help me?
What kind of criminal charges does the Calgary Drug Treatment Court consider?
What happens to my charges if I am accepted into the program?
What kind of treatment will I receive?
Can I live at home while attending treatment?
I think this program can help me. How do I apply?
What happens to my charges if I start the program and then change my mind and want to get out of the program?
What happens to my charges if I want to leave the program voluntarily after the 30-day opting out period has passed or if I am expelled from the program?
I need help filling out my forms. Who can I talk to? Where do I go?
What does it take to graduate from the Calgary drug treatment court?
What if I am not accepted into the program?
I would like to show my support of the program. How can I help?
How can I donate to CDTC?
I still have questions. Who can help me?

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What is a Drug Treatment Court (DTC)? A Drug Treatment Court (DTC) combines addiction treatment services and justice system case processing. Eligible participants are provided with drug rehabilitation and are closely monitored by the court.

The Calgary Drug Treatment Court (CDTC) is an alternative court program for the addicted offender. We work with agencies in the community to provide a range of treatment, rehabilitation, justice and human services to help you through each stage of the program. We provide hope for a better life along with the tools and the support to get you there.

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How does the Calgary Drug Treatment Court (CDTC) program work? Eligible participants are entered into a 5-stage program that includes treatment, transition into the community and graduation. As a participant you are also required to attend drug court every week where the Judge will assess your progress.

This program is not an easy way out of your current legal situation. It is an intensive program that requires dedication and commitment to recovery. You are required to adhere to strict guidelines and will be evaluated on a weekly basis by your team and the court judge.

It is a program to help you recover from your addiction, develop or re-establish your ties to family and community and to work on your employment and vocational skills.

The CDTC court team works closely with treatment and rehabilitation partners to provide you with client-centered support as you progress through the program.

You must follow the rules as laid out by the judge in order to remain in the program.

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Is this program for me? If you are addicted to cocaine, heroin, other opiate(s), or methamphetamine and have been charged with a crime you committed in order to support your drug habit, this program may be right for you.

You must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of Calgary.

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How can this program help me? This program is set up to help you, the addicted offender, achieve your goals of recovery by treating the underlying problems that lead to addiction and the loss of control that can ultimately lead to crime. We help you stop the cycle and help you to lead a healthy, productive life in your community, free from drug addiction and crime.

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What kind of criminal charges does the Calgary Drug Treatment Court consider? The Court will only consider non-violent and drug-related charges where the likely jail sentence would be between one and three years. Charges may include prostitution, possession with the intent to traffic, theft, break and enter, or other non-violent and drug-related crime. The Court must also assess and confirm that you are addicted to a CDSA Schedule I substance, such as cocaine, heroin, other opiate(s), or methamphetamine.

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What happens to my charges if I am accepted into the program? You are required to enter a guilty plea as part of admission into the program. You also agree to delay sentencing on these charges until after graduation (program completion). This will be done by your lawyer or by CDTC Duty Counsel. If you successfully graduate from the program, the Prosecutor will not seek a jail sentence for you, and you can expect to receive a sentence that does not include going to to jail.

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What kind of treatment will I receive? You will enter a treatment and rehabilitation program at one of our partnering Residential Recovery House Programs or our Day Program. Treatment location will be chosen to best fit your specific needs. This will be determined by your Treatment Team. Part of your treatment will be to attend 12- or 16-step meetings and appear in Drug Court every Thursday before the Judge and Court team for regular assessment.

There are different types of treatment paths offered depending on your individual situation. You cannot choose the type of program you enter. This will be done by your Treatment Team after they assess your needs and determine what will provide you with the best opportunity to succeed in your recovery.

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Can I live at home while attending treatment? The treatment path selected for each participant, residential recovery house program, day program or other, is determined by the CDTC Treatment Team and is based upon the best fit for the participants’  treatment needs. Housing model will align with the treatment path chosen. Participants will be required to reside at either a (1) residential recovery house, (2) community housing facility or  potentially, may be approved to (3) live at home.

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I think this program can help me. How do I apply? It is a requirement of the CDTC program that you engage the help of legal counsel to complete the necessary application paperwork. If you already have your own lawyer, he or she can do this with you. If you do not have a lawyer and/or you cannot afford one, please contact Legal Aid Alberta for further assistance.

See How To Apply for application process and forms.

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What happens to my charges if I start the program and then change my mind and want to get out of the program? At any time during the first 30 days following your acceptance into the program and court entry of your guilty plea(s), you can voluntarily withdraw from the program. At that time, your case will be immediately re-directed to the regular court system. Everything you have said or done during your participation in the program before the 30-day opting out period has passed, will be kept confidential and can not be used in court, unless you agree otherwise.

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What happens to my charges if I want to leave the program voluntarily after the 30-day opting out period has passed or if I am expelled from the program? Once the 30 day opting out period has passed, if you voluntarily withdraw or are expelled from the Program, your guilty plea(s) stand and you will be sentenced by the Drug Court Judge. In this case, what you have said and done during your participation in the program can be shared at your sentencing hearing.

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I need help filling out my forms. Who can I talk to? Where do I go? You must have a lawyer help you complete the forms. You can use your own lawyer but if you do not have one, you can go to Legal Aid and a lawyer will be assigned to you. CDTC has their own Duty Counsel at Legal Aid that can help you fill out your forms and answer questions.

To find a CDTC Duty Counsel or contact Legal Aid, please visit Contact Us for details.

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What does it take to graduate from the Calgary drug treatment court?

In order to graduate from the program, you must successfully complete the following:

  •   Be drug and alcohol free and have clean drug and alcohol tests for a minimum of six months including the three months directly prior to graduation;
  •   Complete the treatment component;
  •   Have safe and stable housing in the community;
  •   Show stable employment, or community volunteer service or be enrolled in an education program;
  •   Successfully complete the Criminal and Addictive Thinking Course;
  •   Have a solid recovery plan including a relapse prevention plan and network of support.

Each step along the way, the drug court team will help you develop or access the necessary supports you need, to achieve these milestones.

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What if I am not accepted into the program? If you are not accepted into the program, your case will be returned to the regular court system. Any information you provided to the program team as a part of your application will be kept confidential and will not be used against you in court.

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I would like to show my support of the program. How can I help? Thank you for your interest in growing and assisting the Calgary Drug Treatment Court program. Opportunities to volunteer or to provide in-kind support are valued. These opportunities are based on your unique skills, experience and expertise. They could include, for example, joining our volunteer Board of Directors, donating your expertise in the form of in-kind services such as professional counselling, running a 12-step group, conducting a fitness class or teaching yoga or meditation, offering your marketing and/or media skills, providing human services expertise, etc.

Please Contact Us for further details.

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How can I donate to CDTC?

Donations are gratefully accepted and are needed to support a wide range of services, resources and participants.

Please see the donations page for details:

http://calgarydrugtreatmentcourt.org/donate/

CRA Charity Registration Number 803850916RR0001

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I still have questions. Who can help me? For general inquiries contact CDTC Main Office.

For legal questions contact your lawyer or if you do not have a lawyer and cannot afford one please contact our CDTC Duty Counsel Representative for further assistance.

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