Problem-Solving Courts

Integrated Domestic Violence Courts

The Integrated Domestic Violence Court Model provides an opportunity to address the myriad of inter-related family problems that may bring a family into the court system in a comprehensive manner while providing integrated service delivery and improving both court efficiency and informed judicial decision-making.

Goals & Objectives

Kings County Supreme Court’s Integrated Domestic Violence Court coordinates court action for families affected by domestic violence by bringing related cases involving the same family before a single judge and providing complete information about family issues to aid in judicial decision-making. This court also concentrate resources and services in one court to address the many needs of the families being serviced.

The IDV Court is designed to promote:Informed judicial decision-making, by obtaining comprehensive and up-to-date information on all issues involving the family; protection of the rights of all litigants; victim safety through the elimination of conflicting orders and diligent monitoring of offender compliance with court orders; consistent handling of all matters relating to the same family by a single judge; efficient use of court resources, with reduced numbers of court appearances and speedier dispositions due to the greater availability of information and consolidation of court operations; coordinated response and greater collaboration among criminal justice and child welfare agencies and community based groups offering assistance and services to domestic violence victims and the children in these families; and increased confidence in the court system by reducing inefficiencies for litigants and duplications within the court system.

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Brooklyn Mental Health Court

The Brooklyn Mental Health Court is a specialized court part that seeks to craft a meaningful response to the problems posed by defendants with mental illness in the criminal justice system. Addressing both the treatment needs of defendants with mental illness and the public safety concerns of the community, the Brooklyn Mental Health Court links defendants with serious and persistent mental illnesses (such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder) who would ordinarily be jail- or prison-bound to long-term treatment as an alternative to incarceration.

The goals of the court are to improve the court's ability to identify, assess, evaluate and monitor offenders with mental illness. It does this by holding participants accountable for their actions. It also uses its authority to link offenders with mental illness to appropriate mental health treatment and supports which ensures that participants receive high quality community-based services which engage participants in treatment. By creating effective linkages between criminal justice and the mental health system, public safety is improved as recidivism of offenders with mental illness is reduced.

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Brooklyn Treatment Court

The Brooklyn Treatment Court (BTC) offers substance abuse treatment as an alternative to incarceration for nonviolent felony and misdemeanor drug offenders arrested in Brooklyn, New York. The Brooklyn Treatment Court emerged out of the realization that criminal behavior among drug-addicted offenders often results from having to support a drug addiction, not from deep-seated criminality.

By offering court-monitored treatment, the Brooklyn Treatment Court aims to break the damaging and costly cycle of addiction, crime, and incarceration. The Brooklyn Treatment Court thereby aims to improve the life chances of its participants and to decrease the prevalence of drug addiction and drug-related crime in Brooklyn, New York.

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Domestic Violence Court

The Brooklyn Domestic Violence Court opened in June 1996 and was the first specialized court in New York State dedicated to handling felony domestic violence crimes. As the first court of its kind, it was charged with creating an effective and coordinated response to domestic violence crime and has served as a model for over 20 domestic violence courts statewide. In response, to the increased number of domestic violence cases in Brooklyn, a second Domestic Violence Court opened in 1998. These courts have received wide national and international recognition and awards for their pioneering work in combating domestic violence.

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