Drug Court

The San Francisco Drug Court (SFDC) was established in 1995 as an alternative to traditional sentencing options for drug offenders. SFDC is a collaborative effort among the Superior Court, the Office of the District Attorney, the Office of the Public Defender, the Adult Probation Department, the Department of Public Health, the Sheriff's Department, and the Police Department.

SFDC has its own treatment clinic located one block from the Hall of Justice and is supported by local funding through the Department of Public Health. After enrollment, the defendants' treatment is monitored by the Court. A series of sanctions and incentives are used to encourage compliance with treatment. Those who are non-compliant receive graduated sanctions such as writing an essay, community service or jail time - to encourage adherence with treatment. Upon successful program completion, probation is terminated or charges are dismissed.

In addition to the legal benefits, the program is designed so that participants can acquire the tools necessary to live a clean and sober lifestyle. Resources are also provided to help further their education and/or obtain vocational training and maintain stable employment allowing them to become contributing members of society.


The Drug Court of the Superior Court of California, County of San Francisco, seeks to connect criminal defendants who suffer from a substantial substance abuse problem to treatment services in the community in order to enhance public safety, reduce recidivism, and to find appropriate dispositions to the criminal charges that take into consideration the individual’s substance abuse problem, mental and physical health, and the seriousness of the offense.