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January 22, 2024

Insights From the Front Line—Police-led Deflection Programs

Join us for a webinar led by our partners at the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP), where presenters from the Faribault, Minnesota, Police Department, the New Jersey Transit Police Department, and the Newark, New Jersey, Community Street Team will explain the benefits of addressing substance use disorders (SUDs) through deflection to treatment and services, discuss the work of their initiatives, and share best practices for collaborating with community partners.

Evidence from several studies, including a systematic review of more than 25 police-led diversion programs, indicates that police-led programs that deflect people with SUDs from the justice system can prevent criminal offending and show promise for improving participants’ health and reducing social and financial costs associated with processing drug-related offenses.[1] The January 2024 issue of Police Chief, the monthly magazine of the IACP, will feature articles (available below) about three COSSUP-affiliated police-led deflection programs: Plymouth County Outreach in Plymouth County, Massachusetts; the Police Assisted Recovery and Deflection/Diversion Program in Faribault, Minnesota; and a collaborative effort between the New Jersey Transit Police Outreach Program and the Newark Community Street Team, Overdose Response Team.

Featured Police Chief magazine articles:

"Lighting the Pathways to Recovery: Police Assisted Recovery and Deflection/Diversion (PARD) Program"

"Hope in Action: From Crisis to Change"

"Building Community Capacity to Combat the Overdose Crisis with Data"

[1]Etienne Blais et al., July 2022, “Diverting People Who Use Drugs From the Criminal Justice System: A Systematic Review of Police-based Diversion Measures,” International Journal of Drug Policy 105: 103697,


  • Karen Maline, Project Manager, IACP (Moderator)
  • Inspector Nicholas Capriglione, Social Service Outreach Supervisor, New Jersey Transit Police Department
  • Divad Sanders, Program Director, Overdose Response Team, Newark Community Street Team
  • Chief John Sherwin, Faribault Police Department


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