Date of Defense


Date of Graduation




First Advisor

Victor Manzon

Second Advisor

Barry Goetz


Substance use and misuse is a prevalent issue in the United States. This issue affects many aspects of society, from the health care system to the criminal justice system. With substance misuse issues, they typically flow over into the criminal justice field, which can be seen by data that has been collected. Some medical field programs address substance misuse issues and it would be beneficial to have programs involving law enforcement with the initial connection to the criminal justice field. The criminal justice system is no stranger to this issue and has strategized new ways to address it. Although the programs that have been developed are few, the statistics show these can be effective. Some of these newly developed criminal justice programs are similar to those implemented in the medical field. Research indicates these programs may help with many of the problems associated with substance use problems as well as issues in the criminal justice system. These programs include Stop, Triage, Engage, Educate, Rehabilitate (STEER), Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD), and those developed by Police Assisted Addiction & Recovery Initiative (PAARI). Although these programs statistically prove beneficial, there have been some challenges in implementing them into Law Enforcement. With those challenges, several lessons have been learned. There are problems with excessive arrests for drugs, but people are suffering from a mental health and medical issue not a crime issue, and society needs to do something different about this. The war on drugs has failed and it would be better to serve people and society in a manner without incarcerating them. Diversion/deflection programs are a way to accomplish this.

Access Setting

Honors Thesis-Restricted

Restricted to Campus until


Available for download on Wednesday, February 16, 2022