WILMINGTON — Four participants of the local You-Turn Recovery Docket will take part in a new group that concentrates on life skills.
The group will be comprised of eight members, all women. The once-a-week, two-hour sessions will be held for six weeks.
Clinton County Community Supervision Program Director Stephanie Blust reported to Clinton County Common Pleas Judge John W. “Tim” Rudduck that most of the eight group members have drug issues. Rudduck presides over the You-Turn Recovery Docket, sometimes called drug court.
The life-skills curriculum will focus on drug issues that arise for those who are addicted, and facilitators will try to pass on life skills that help the members approach those issues, Blust said.
The newly created group is paid for by a state grant, said the judge.
At Friday’s meeting of You-Turn Recovery Docket participants, Rudduck told the four who will take the life skills class to evaluate it honestly when it concludes.
“At the end, I want you to ask yourself, ‘Was it beneficial?’ I just want your honest approach to help us improve the [You-Turn Recovery] program going forward,” said Rudduck.
One of the You-Turn Recovery participants enrolled in the life skills class is Racheal Roberts. She said Friday she is “excited to hear what they have to say in life skills class because I’ve been struggling about this new life and stuff.”
Rudduck told her she had come a long way over the past several months.
Roberts said she’s “trying to build a life, do things, talk to my therapist.”
She added, “It’s not necessarily that I get triggered [by a particular event]. I just miss that lifestyle.”
Rudduck responded that life is hard, but encouraged her to stay the course.
“You’ve got purpose, you’ve got goals. We know this — if you continue down the lifestyle you were in, on the road you were on, it’s not going to take you anywhere but down. Dead or in jail,” said Rudduck.
In another status review hearing at Friday’s You-Turn Recovery meeting, the judge asked Tammy Barney whether she had any recent “triggering events.” She replied she “ran into old users.”
At the end of the Rudduck and Barney dialogue, the judge said “keep up the good work” as he gave her a thumbs up.
It was noted that the father of one of the You-Turn Recovery participants is a substance abuse counselor.
One participant, Emily Schalk, said she had decided to be an outpatient with her out-of-county residential program.
Rudduck said, “OK, this is where you and I have to have a talk. You don’t decide what the treatment is. That’s the problem.”
She was advised to contact a local counseling program and get an assessment on what they think a reasonable treatment program would be so that the judge can talk to her about it.
“Folks who come in here don’t set up their own treatment plan,” added Rudduck.
He told the 11 You-Turn Recovery participants present — two in particular — to be mindful that if they don’t remain of good behavior and go before another judge in a different jurisdiction, then they may find themselves behind bars, unable to attend You-Turn Recovery drug court.
To graduate from You-Turn Recovery, a participant has to be clean of drugs for 12 months, said Dana Dunn, the drug court case manager.
You-Turn Recovery provides defendants with an opportunity to avoid incarceration and address their substance dependency issues with support from the judge, probation officers, substance abuse counselors and other members of a specialized docket treatment team, states the program’s website you-turn-drug-docket.org.
It was announced there is a new drug crisis hotline for residents of Clinton and Warren counties: 1-877-695-NEED (6333).
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768 or on Twitter @GHuffenberger.