Family Drug Court

A number of communities are developing Family Treatment Drug Courts (FTDCs), alternatively known as Dependency Drug Courts. FTDCs are an increasingly popular method of (a) meeting the requirements of ASFA and (b) enhancing functional status and reunification success among families involved in child welfare and affected by substance use disorders.

Definition of a Family (Treatment) Drug Court:

Family dependency treatment court is a juvenile or family court docket of which selected abuse, neglect, and dependency cases are identified where parental substance abuse is a primary factor. Judges, attorneys, child protection services, and treatment personnel unite with the goal of providing safe, nurturing, and permanent homes for children while simultaneously providing parents the necessary support and services to become drug and alcohol abstinent. Family dependency treatment courts aid parents in regaining control of their lives and promote long-term stabilized recovery to enhance the possibility of family reunification within mandatory legal timeframes (Wheeler & Siegerist, 2003).

Oregon has eleven Family Drug Courts. Visit Deschutes County FDC for a program example

Click a county to contact a FDC Coordinator
Clackamas County
Clatsop County
Columbia County
Deschutes County
Jackson County
Klamath County
Linn County
Malheur County
Marion County
Wasco County
Yamhill County

For information dedicated specifically to Family Drug Courts go to:

Family Treatment Drug Courts


A new study, “Healing Families: Outcomes from a Family Drug Treatment Court,” reveals positive results from a family treatment court program in Washington state. Led by Jacqueline van Wormer, who is a National Drug Court Institute faculty member and Assistant Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Washington State University, the study found that parents enrolled in a family treatment court were reunited with their children at higher rates than parents in a traditional court.

Other findings of the study include:

  • Family treatment court program participants were nearly three times as likely to complete treatment than parents participating in the traditional court program.
  • 91% of family treatment court participants did not have their parental rights terminated, while only 70% of traditional court participants did not have their parental rights terminated.

Read the full report here: Healing Families: Outcomes from a Family Drug Treatment Court