FREEHOLD, NJ - The Monmouth Vicinage will honor National Drug Court Month during May through a number of events designed to inspire participants and encourage their success in the program.

Municipal Court Days: The Long Branch Municipal Court will host a Drug Court session on April 26 at 9 a.m. at the Long Branch Municipal Court, at 279 Broadway in Long Branch.  On May 10, the Hazlet Township Municipal Court will host a Drug Court session at 9 a.m. at 255 Middle Rd. in Hazlet. During this session, some participants will commence from Phase 3 to Phase 4 of the program.

Court sessions held in the municipal courts demonstrate the collaborative aspect of the program. They link the courts with prosecutors, attorneys, law enforcement, treatment providers, social service agencies and community-based non-profit organizations.  Municipal Court Judge Mark T. Apostolou, who recently hosted the Drug Court team in Asbury Park, said, “I am an avid proponent of Drug Court for several reasons.  I have witnessed its positive effects on individuals, families and society. The Superior Court and Municipal Court share a common client base. Many of our clients have turned the corner and are now leading productive lives with jobs and renewed meaningful relationships with their families.  Judge Scully, his predecessor Judge Chaiet and the entire Drug Court team deserve much credit and accolades.  We truly enjoy working with them and being part of a solution."

Family Days:  On May 3 and 4, Drug Court participants are invited to bring family members to attend the court sessions so they can better understand the disease of addiction and see, first hand, the progress made by participants.

Sponsor Days:  On May 24 and 25, Drug Court participants are invited to bring their sponsors to a Drug Court so they may take an active role in the court process.

Commencement:  On May 11, additional Drug Court participants will commence from Phase 3 to Phase 4. Participants in Phase 4 have earned the right to be placed on standard probation and will work toward graduation from the Drug Court program.

Recognition Days:  On May 17 and 18, participants in Phase 4 will share with others their strength, hope and experiences in overcoming obstacles.

The Drug Court program is a specialized team process within the Superior Court of New Jersey.  It is highly structured and requires completion of four phases during an intensive probation period that lasts up to five years and includes drug and alcohol treatment and testing.

This level of supervision enables strong support of the recovery process. It also allows for swift imposition of therapeutic sanctions or reinstatement of criminal proceedings for non-compliance with the program.

Established in 2002, the Monmouth Vicinage Drug Court program has graduated 163 participants and currently has 330 active cases. Superior Court Judge Thomas F. Scully presides over the program whose team is comprised of extremely dedicated staff from the criminal and probation divisions.

For further information regarding the Monmouth Vicinage Drug Court, contact program coordinator Adri Lieb at 732-677-4551.