Evaluation methodology

The evaluation was guided by an evaluation matrix (evaluation questions, indicators and data sources) which was developed through the evaluation scoping and design process. The methodology for this evaluation included multiple lines of evidence described below. Appendix B contains the list of evaluation questions, and a more detailed description of the evaluation methodology is included in Appendix C.

3.1 Literature, Document and Data Review

A review was conducted of secondary data sources relevant to the DTCFP. These materials included:

3.2 Analysis of Drug Treatment Court Information System Data

Most DTCs report information on their participants through the federal Drug Treatment Court Information System (DTCIS). The analysis included all participants who were active in the DTCs (where information was accurately captured in DTCIS) at some point between April 1, 2015 and June 17, 2021 (N = 1,053).6 The DTCIS includes information on the profile of DTC participants, as well as completion status.

3.3 Survey of stakeholders

An online survey was conducted of DTC stakeholders. All DTCs funded under the program provided lists of stakeholders or agreed to distribute the link of the survey to their stakeholders. In total, 139 individuals completed the survey. Among DTCs that provided a list of stakeholders for the survey, a 49% response rate was achieved. The profile of surveyed stakeholders included: members of the dedicated DTC management, court (judges, prosecutors) and treatment team (56%), governance or advisory committee members (21%), external treatment or service providers (19%), defence counsel (9%), and other (e.g., policy, management).

3.4 Key informant interviews

A total of 63 in-depth interviews were conducted for the evaluation, including:

3.5 Limitations and Mitigation Strategies

The evaluation has several methodological limitations that should be noted.


Footnotes

6 Note: Data for 2015 and 2021 are partial. Also, data in 2020 and 2021 reflect interruptions in DTC operations during the COVID-19 pandemic.