Problem Solving Must-Reads: A Court That Puts Families First

Plus: Fixing infrastructure through private partnership and a database of artists

Problem Solving Must-Reads: A Court That Puts Families First

Plus: Fixing infrastructure through private partnership and a database of artists

Child abuse and neglect cases are skyrocketing in Montana, where many areas of the state are struggling with the methamphetamine epidemic. These cases have doubled since 2010 in the state, and they aren’t slowing down: In the first three quarters of 2016, there have been nearly 2,000 cases filed. But rather than having many of these cases tear families apart or contribute to the country’s mass incarceration epidemic, they’re instead being sent to family drug courts.

Family drug courts are similar to adult drug courts; they allow participants to receive chemical dependency treatments, take frequent drug and alcohol tests and are based on a system of “rewards” and “sanctions” depending on their progress. But family drug courts go further: They’re modeled to focus on healthy parent-child relationships, with a high demand on accountability at work and at home.

These drug courts have reduced recidivism by an average of 14 percent throughout the country (and the best drug courts reduce it by as much as 80 percent). Better yet, families are able to heal after drug addiction nearly tears their family apart.

Read the full story here (via The Montana Standard).

Here’s what else we’re reading:

Can the private sector solve Metro Detroit's infrastructure woes?

Photo: Metro Detroit

State and local governments in Detroit are struggling to find the massive amount of money needed to fix the city’s crumbling infrastructure. Michigan, which continues to struggle to recover from the Great Recession, has a harder time than most states to find the funds. But there is hope that if the governments in the state make public-private partnerships—agreements between government entities with a private company to build, design, maintain or operate a public structure—then the infrastructure needs can be fixed and economic growth can return to the area. In one example, the Michigan Department of Transportation’s worked with a private company to replace 15,000 freeway lights with LED bulbs, saving the city money in the long run. (via Metro Detroit)

Harnessing art to spur entrepreneurship in Live6

Photo: Model D

A professor emeritus from Marygrove College collected data about 120 artists living and working in two neighborhoods within the city of Detroit. The data came from a survey, and was later built into a database. The goal is to create access to talent for future art exhibits to grow. Now anyone—businesses, individuals or institutions—from the area can access the database to work with the talented artists in this high-poverty area. (via Model D)

Photo Header via The Montana Standard

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