Stearns County Drug Court Success Has the State Legislature Interested
Stearns county has had a "Drug Court" since 2002 and its success is getting noticed by the State Legislature. Stearns County Attorney Janelle Kendall joined me on WJON. She explains Stearns County was the first in the state to have a "Drug Court" and the State Legislature has recently contacted Stearns County to learn why the county has had so much success with the problem.
Kendall says the way it works in Stearns County is when someone has a recurring drug problem the county seeks that person out. She explains they don't wait for these people to volunteer like many other programs do. Kendall says this person then gets their full 24 hour supervision. She says because of their partnerships with other local organizations they can make this happen. Kendall explains their domestic violence program is done similarly.
Kendall indicates this can work for other counties in the state but the key is getting people to work well with others. She says they had a rise in drug use during the pandemic in 2020 and 2021. Kendall explains they invite many people to the table to solves these issues including local judges and public defenders.
If you'd like to listen to my conversation with Stearns County Attorney Janelle Kendall it is available below. We also discuss the partnership with CentraCare in regards to the Child Advocacy Center, the possible expansion of the county jail and and update on human trafficking.