New court proposed for addictions/mental illness
P.E.I. is looking at the idea of setting up a therapeutic court that would handle the cases of people who are in trouble with the law because of addictions or mental health issues.
A request for proposals has gone out for a study looking into how it would work, as well as the costs and benefits.
Justice Minister Janice Sherry is concerned about how coming changes to federal legislation will put pressure on provincial corrections facilities.
"Are there other ways to invest dollars that would cut down the number of people who are going to prison, or the number of people who are repeat offenders, for example," said Sherry.
"If their issues are around mental health issues or addiction issues, if they were able to get the supports that they require in order to overcome their issue, would that be a better use of dollars spent?"
Sherry said similar courts have been set up in some other provinces, but she is looking at a court specifically designed to meet P.E.I's needs.
The deadline for the request for proposals is Jan. 4.