Hennepin County seeks drug court volunteers

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May 3, 2004 // UPDATED 1:27 pm - April 25, 2007
By: Robyn Repya
Robyn Repya

Hennepin County's Adult Probation office is currently seeking volunteers to help with their drug court program. Volunteers are trained by court staff to assist first-time offenders.

Drug court is a judge-supervised alternative to jail for some drug offenders. The goal is to direct offenders to treatment and keep them substance-free, while nudging them towards activities to reduce reoffending, such as education and employment. Unresponsive defendants who completely fail the program are incarcerated.

In a news release, the county stated that volunteers must commit to four hours a week or more for approximately one year, working Downtown in the Adult Probation office at the Hennepin County Government Center, 300 S. 6th St.

Volunteer duties include interviewing first-time offenders; reviewing files; monitoring defendant progress; and assisting in calls to help defendants find resources, including treatment programs and housing. Volunteers would also serve as advocates for defendants when they deal with service providers.

Those interested are urged to attend a drug court volunteer information session Wednesday, May 12 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., where they can talk with drug court judges and probation officers.

For more information, call Tatiana Przytula or Bina Nikrin at 348-6893 or e-mail them at tatiana.przytula@co.hennepin.mn.us or bina.nikrin@co.hennepin.mn.us.