The Denver County Jail uses a peer recovery model to help inmates take a more active role in their substance abuse treatment, The Denver Post reports. Participants in the program work together, along with clinicians, in day-long sessions to hold one another accountable for their choices. The program runs six days a week, from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The jail is the only one in the state, and one of only a few in the nation, to use the Recovery in a Safe Environment program, the article notes. It has been running since 2011. Some inmates join voluntarily, while others are required to participate as part of their sentence. Last year, 208 men and 128 women participated in the program.
“The majority of the programming is run by inmates, which makes them more invested in the process and gives them an opportunity to take a more active role in their recovery,” Jamie Jackson, Program Administrator for the Denver County Jail, told the newspaper. “It really is a unique environment. Generally when you come to jail, you don’t ever want to show any type of weakness, but these men and women are letting their guard down.”