World Wide Wednesday: Creativity, Innovation and Substance Use Treatment

Posted on: April 29th, 2011 By: Smart on Crime

Each month we focus on research, blogs and news from around the world addressing smart approaches to crime prevention. We’re always on the lookout for websites and resources to draw from. Since the Waterloo Region Integrated Drugs Strategy (WRIDS) Task Force is deep into the data collection phase of their project, it seems only fitting that we share some items related to substance use and addictions within communities.


The following programs and initiatives illustrate several Smart on Crime directions including Education and Learning, as they aim to educate clinicians and the public about diverse ways to deal with substance use.

  • [Canada] The Calgary Drug Treatment Court (CDTC) started operations in May of 2007 having obtained funding through the City of Calgary. The program requires offenders to complete three stages: a mandatory residential treatment stage, a rehabilitation stage to help men and women re-enter the community as clean, sober, crime-free citizens, and a graduation and sentencing stage. Lasting an average of 18 months, offenders are required to appear weekly before a judge and participate in regular drug testing. A multi-disciplinary approach fosters success for participants by providing wrap-around services for those seeking help.

More information: The Canadian Association of Drug Treatment Courts

  • [United States] The ‘warm line’  is a free, nationwide service launched recently on April 8, 2011 which offers peer-to-peer mentorship and resources for primary care physicians on incorporating screening and follow-up for substance-using patients into regular patient care. The ‘warm line’ service offers responses within 24 hours to physicians and other health care providers at no cost.  Registration is required, and all physicians are provided with the contact information of a mentor who is a specialist in screening, brief intervention, treatment and referral for patients with substance use problems. Mentors can then be contacted, via phone or email, with specific questions about clinical situations involving alcohol, drugs, and tobacco. The initiative stresses the importance of the patient-doctor relationship in identifying unhealthy behaviors before they evolve into life threatening conditions.

Screening Tool Examples | National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA)

  • [Kenya] Drug addiction? Try community therapy. The Therapeutic Community (TC) model has the ability to heal, restore and transform an addict. Research-based evidence by the International Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has documented the success of this model in treating individuals with drug problems stemming from social and psychological causes.  Its success comes from peers helping peers and “community as method,” ensuring everyone in the community plays a role.
    Locally, the Stonehenge Therapeutic Community in Guelph is an example of the initiative recommended for those communities dealing with addiction issues including Cost Province, Kenya.

Therapeutic Community | Stonehenge Therapuetic Community

Authored by: Tracie McGrath-Levis, BSW Practicum Student to WRCPC

What additional resources would you recommend related to women, violence and crime? Have your read anything thought provoking that you care to share? Post a comment to let us (and other readers) know about it!

World Wide Wednesday: Women, Violence and Crime

Posted on: March 16th, 2011 By: Smart on Crime

Each month we focus on research, blogs and news from around the world addressing smart approaches to crime prevention. We’re always on the lookout for websites and resources to draw from. March kicked off with International Women’s Day earlier this month. It seems only fitting that we share some items related to women.


  • [International] In 2007, the world’s population of people living in cities reached 50% and half of that number is women and girls. In many cities, women and girls remain particularly vulnerable to violence and crime. Women in Cities International (WICI) uses participatory research methods with groups of women in Argentina, Russia, Tanzania and India to produce the baseline findings in “Learning from women to create gender inclusive cities“. WICI doesn’t mince words when they say ensuring women’s safety should be of primary concern for urban governance and city development.

Download the Report | My City! My Safety!WICI website

Download the Report | ICPC Website

  • [United States] The state of Oklahoma sends more women to prison (per capita) than any other U.S. state. The Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse aims to change that with its own “smart on crime” plan. Their proposal includes alternative interventions and programs at 17 different points between an arrest and incarceration. Their aim is to reduce prison costs, provide more rehabilitative options and reduce the impact of incarceration on families.
  • [International] And of course, there are all the resources from the UN Women program for gender equality and the empowerment of women. They have pan-national studies, statistics and best practices beyond your imagination.

What additional resources would you recommend related to women, violence and crime? Have your read anything thought provoking that you care to share? Post a comment to let us (and other readers) know about it!

We’re not the only SMART ones in the room

Posted on: December 14th, 2010 By: Smart on Crime

There are so many innovative, promising and proven practices in the field of crime prevention through social development  – we can learn a great deal by taking into consideration knowledge, experience, research and wisdom from around the world.

The World Wide Wednesday feature on our Smart on Crime blog will point you to links, research, blogs and news from those thinking and acting creatively on crime prevention projects and practice around the world.

We hope you’ll share things that you find too – there’s a lot of knowledge and experience out there to share!