The Multnomah County (Oreg.) Drug Testing and Evaluation (DTE) Program for pretrial defendants and convicted offenders was assessed by means of a process evaluation, which considered seven distinct components of both the pretrial program and the probation and parole program.
The program provides random, weekly drug tests to all participants to monitor compliance with release conditions and progress in treatment and to intervene appropriately when a participant displays signs of a drug abuse program. DTE also aims to provide a bridge between pretrial and post-trial supervision. The evaluations focused on the function of DTE from its inception in January 1991 through the spring of 1992. The evaluations focused on participant recruitment; participant drug testing' adjunct processing such as diagnosis and treatment; sanctions and rewards; termination or continuation of participants; data communication, storage, and recording; and program linkage to other DTE programs. Results revealed that the pretrial DTE program generally functions as intended. However, some program aspects vary substantially from the original plans. In addition, the DTE designers allowed probation/parole officers great latitude in how they could use DTE; thus, officers have autonomously evolved the DTE probation and parole process. As intended by DTE's developers, they use DTE as an additional method of surveillance and control. They also use DTE as an informal sanctioning procedure. They are pleased with the program and are using DTE's drug testing facilities; they are also using their experience to select participants whom they believe will most benefit from DTE. Appended background information and discussion of administrative and logistical changes in the program through February 1993
Date Published: January 1, 1993