Even relatively minor drug charges can have a damaging effect on a person's life, as our society takes drug-related transgressions very seriously. However, the justice system in New Hampshire and other states is coming to an increasing realization that, when drugs are involved, there is often another side to the problem.
Many people who commit drug-related crimes suffer from addiction. Clearly, throwing them in jail just like any other criminal will punish them for a particular crime but will not cure its root cause, which is the addiction. Thus, they emerge from prison with the same or even a higher likelihood of committing further offenses. Drug courts today offer an alternative to traditional legal penalties for some types of drug offenders.