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The University of Nicosia School of Law with the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki Faculty of Law invite you to attend and participate in the upcoming conference with the title “Crime and Addiction: The Drug Treatment Court’s Response”. The conference will be addressed by the Honourable Minister of Justice and Public Order of the Republic of Cyprus, Mrs Stephie Drakos.

Forty years of “The War on Drugs” has demonstrated that this application of criminal justice has failed. When a drug addicted person is charged with a criminal offence, criminality may be related directly or indirectly to addiction. Yet, traditional sentencing in many common law and continental jurisdictions focuses mainly on criminality while addiction is given some mitigating role. Sentencing drug addiction and related crimes via incarceration promotes recidivism and the revolving door phenomenon. Crime and addiction have a complicated relationship. Addiction is self-harmful and when accompanied by crime might be harmful to others. The taxpayers’ cost from repetitive incarceration of addicted people who are involved in non-violent crime is high. For this population, Drug Treatment Courts are the epitome of Criminal Justice goals. Their successful implementation reduces both crime and addiction.

This conference will provide a unique opportunity for all the participants to understand the philosophy of Drug Treatment Courts (DTCs) through the experience of professionals in the field. The establishment of a pilot court will allow the State to examine strengths and weaknesses for the implementation of treatment courts in our Cypriot and Greek society.

The participants will have the opportunity to address questions to the speakers and share with them their concerns. Not all societies are ready to change but change might be inevitable when a traditional approach leads to a dead end.

For your registration follow the link (Eventbrite). Pre-registration is strongly recommended.

Cost: No fees

Certificates of attendance will be provided to the participants.

Language: English

Note for the “Interactive Discussion” part: Participants may address written questions in Greek. Relevant translation will be provided for the speakers.

Who should attend: Judges, Lawyers, Prosecutors, Police officers, Treatment providers, Social workers, Psychologists, Psychiatrists, Teachers, Academics, Criminologists, Sociologists, Parole Officers, Probation Officers, Correction Officers, Researchers, People interested in the topics of crime, addiction and imprisonment.

Research Funding: Universitas Foundation through the University of Nicosia Research Foundation

Related Program of Study: Criminal Law and Addictions, M.Sc, Joint Degree (University of Nicosia with Aristotle University of Thessaloniki).

Conference Co-organisers: Organisation of Friends and Relatives of Addicted People of Cyprus & Universitas Foundation

View/Download the Programme here.

The conference will be accessible through the YouTube Channel of School of Law, University of Nicosia


Honourable Mr Justice Kofi Barnes, Judge, Ontario Superior Court of Justice

Mr. Justice Barnes is a judge of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice and the founding President of the Association of Justice and Treatment Professionals www.justicetreatment.org; President of the International Association of Treatment Court Professionals and founding past President of the Canadian Association of Drug Treatment Court Professionals.  In addition to his regular judicial duties, he designs and conducts training programs on solution focused strategies and innovative approaches to justice. Justice Barnes is the founder of innovative programs such as the Metro West Community Restoration Court in 2011; the Durham Mental Health and Drug Treatment Court in Oshawa in 2006; co-founder of Canada’s first Drug Treatment Court in Toronto in 1998. He is a co-editor of People, Places and Things a collection of stories from participants and practitioners from Canada’s Drug Treatment Courts. For more information click this link. https://youtu.be/tuGP6gU9CvM.

Jennifer Graham,  Assistant Crown Attorney, Ontario Canada

Ms Graham was called in the bar of the Law Society of Ontario in 2013 after earning her Juris Doctor from the University of Windsor in 2012. Prior to that, Jennifer graduated from York University in Toronto with a specialized honours Bachelor of Arts in global political studies in 2009 and a Bachelor of Arts in psychology in 2004. Jennifer is currently employed as an Assistant Crown Attorney for the province of Ontario in Canada. She has held this role for over 8 years and has been involved in many projects. Most notably, Jennifer joined the Brampton Drug Treatment Court team in 2016 where she demonstrated leadership and a keen interest to better understand the challenges that the clientele face within the broader system. Her empathy and compassionate curiosity serve her well in forming strong alliances with community partners and improving client experiences within the criminal justice system. She works closely with the judiciary, defence counsel, human services agencies and the broader community to ensure that the program is responsive to the needs of the local community. Jennifer is a founding member of the Association of Justice and Treatment Professionals (AJTP) and has been working on its organizing committee since AJTP’s inception in early 2021. Jennifer has been a member of the provincial Human Services & Justice Coordinating Committee (HSJCC) since the spring of 2019 and has been the co-chair of the regional committee since September 2020. She sits on the HSJCC provincial executive committee as well as at the provincial table. Jennifer has a strong interest in initiating and supporting the exchange of knowledge across sectors and truly appreciates the importance of collaboration and collective effort.

Robin Cuff, Manager of the Toronto Drug Treatment Court program, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto

Ms Cuff is a registered psychotherapist and the Manager of the Toronto Drug Treatment Court treatment program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto. Robin’s education and training spans the fields of business, theology, human resource management, counseling, addictions, concurrent disorders and trauma. She is a faculty member of the William Glasser Institute for Choice Theory, Reality Therapy and Lead Management. Robin has 23 years of leadership in the field of addiction and related services, both in the community and in a hospital setting, primarily serving marginalized populations. She has participated in the development of best practices for women’s addiction treatment, withdrawal management and trauma-informed care. Robin has a passion for knowledge exchange and has contributed to diverse training opportunities across Canada and in the Caribbean and Latin America, sharing insights and experiences on topics such as trauma, addiction, and alternatives to incarceration. Robin loves leading teams to provide quality, trauma-informed and hope-based care.

Lorne Sabsay, Practising Lawyer, National Executive Director of the Canadian Association of Drug Treatment Court Professionals.

Mr Sabsay has been practicing law since 1987. Certified by the Law Society of Upper Canada as a specialist in criminal law, Lorne has defended clients charged with virtually every offence imaginable, from shoplifting to murder.  Since 2001, Lorne has also been a civil litigator, with an emphasis on litigation arising from criminal allegations and representing professionals before professional discipline boards and students before academic tribunals.  In addition to practicing law, Lorne has for most of his career been a frequent contributor to enhancing the skills of other lawyers and students through his teaching of advocacy and legal skills through various legal organizations including the Advocates Society, Osgoode Hall Law School, the Criminal Lawyers Association and the Ontario Bar Association. Lorne has a special interest in the intersection of treatment and justice and is the National Executive Director of the Canadian Association of Drug Treatment Court Professionals. In addition to his legal training and expertise, Lorne is an avid practitioner of martial arts. He holds a 5th-degree black belt in karate and has achieved the karate teaching designation of Shihan (senior instructor). Lorne is also a blue belt and 2021 World Master silver medalist in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.


Dr Demetra Fr. Sorvatzioti, Associate Professor, Associate Head, Law Department, University of Nicosia

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