Instead of traditional police approaches, law enforcement diversion and deflection rely on law enforcement as the referral source to community-based treatment or service providers before arrest.
Pre-Arrest and Pre-Prosecution Diversion
Pre-arrest and pre-prosecution diversion programs redirect individuals from traditional criminal justice pathways to treatment or support systems. There is a wide range of diversion models in operation across the United States; however, many programs aim to increase connections to support services, reduce pressure on the criminal justice system (e.g., saving money, saving time), and hold individuals accountable. Diversion programs connect individuals involved or at risk of becoming involved in the justice system to substance use disorder treatment, recovery support, harm reduction services, primary healthcare, prevention, or other services or supports they need. Diversion programs have the potential to alleviate many of the negative social, economic, and behavioral health outcomes associated with being justice-involved.