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HomeAJTP 2022 Current Issues Conference

2022 Annual Conference Day 1

Topics from 2022 Annual Conference Day 1:


Dr Robb Kelly will kick off the conference by engaging the audience in a thought-provoking keynote that will address how the criminal justice system is ground zero for the war on drugs and alcoholism and how to leverage it to find meaningful solutions. He will also discuss the importance of changing the perception of addiction from a behavioural problem to that of a mental health concern with an emphasis on the role of trauma in addiction. He will introduce the latest research on brain mapping and changing neural pathways-neuroplasticity. Lastly, he will share his insights on alcohol dependence and how it’s not a drinking problem, it’s a thinking problem.

Moderator: Jennifer Graham

Speaker: Dr. Robb Kelly

Youth & Family Focused Panel

This panel explores the family unit as a complex social system in which members interact to influence each other's behaviour and the patterns that emerge around addiction and criminalized behaviour. Other factors, such as experiences of racism and marginalization, as well as biological and psychosocial conditions, will be highlighted as they influence criminal behaviour among young people.

Moderator: Mary Pagani

Speaker: Dr. Robb Kelly, Sharon Mayne Devine, Norma Nicholson


Community safety and well-being cannot rest solely on the shoulders of the police. It is a shared responsibility of all members of the community and requires an integrated approach to bring municipalities, First Nations and community partners together to address a collective goal. Breaking down existing silos and encouraging multi-sectoral partnerships are essential in developing strategies, programs and services to help minimize risk factors and improve the overall well-being of our communities. Presented by esteemed police representatives, this session will highlight key initiatives and successes of policing across North America.

Moderator: Norma Nicholson

Speaker: Chief Brendan Cox, John Versluis PPS, Peter Moreira TPS

Indigenous Keynote

Gwekwaadziwin Miikan is an Indigenous-led land-based mental health and addictions program located on Mnidoo Mnising within the Robinson-Huron Treaty area. With a provincial catchment area, Gwekwaadziwin Miikan delivers four season, 90-day land-based programming for participants 19 years and older. In this keynote address, our speakers will provide an overview of culturally appropriate land-based healing modalities and the necessity of culturally relevant programming in addressing socioeconomic barriers and fostering sustainable recovery.


Speaker:Matt Maracle, Sam Gilchrist

2022 Annual Conference Day 2

Topics from 2022 Annual Conference Day 2:

Recovery Capital:

The application of a recovery capital strategy is critical with justice-involved individuals and in treatment courts. By taking a comprehensive view of a person’s internal and external resources, courts and individuals can account for the barriers and roadblocks that may trap people in the justice system. This session will define recovery capital a conceptual framework for assessment, measurement, and change. It will provide guidance for applying a recovery capital assessment in the judicial process. And it will highlight some emerging research identifying predictive indicators of re-offence.

Speaker: David Whitesock


Breaking Free:

At the height of the pandemic, amidst frequent lockdowns within Ohio prisons, researchers Sarah-Elison Davies and Glyn Davies conducted research to learn the benefits and drawbacks of digital treatment methods for methamphetamine-dependent inmates, in the absence of in-person treatment. This session will present the findings of the study conducted with prison residents across Ohio who engaged with Breaking Free from Substance Abuse, a digital cognitive behavioural therapy program. This study reports data from 2187 Ohio prison residents who engaged with this digital CBT program to address their methamphetamine use and examines how baseline psychosocial risk factors and program engagement were associated with the encouraging outcomes obtained, including significant reductions in the severity of substance dependence and mental health difficulties.

This represents the first time this digital CBT intervention has been made widely available to incarcerated people residing in prisons or jails in the United States.


Speakers: Sarah Elison-Davies, Glyn Davies

Innovative Practices Panel

This session will present information on the New South Wales Australia Drug Treatment Court and the New Rochelle, New York Opportunity Youth Part. The New Rochelle Opportunity Youth Part (OYP), serves young people 16-24 who are not in school, are unemployed or under-employed, and are typically disconnected from positive services within their communities. OYP’s community-centric approach links eligible young adults facing misdemeanor or felony charges to direct service providers who offer mental health and substance use treatment, job training and placement, academic assistance, and mentoring services. The New South Wales Drug Treatment Court (NSW DCT) provides treatment for recidivists and follows a drug treatment court operational philosophy in selection criteria, judicial supervised intensive treatment, smart sanctions and rewards and program stages. The NSW DCT is an example of a State’s duty to safeguard health by promoting treatment but not forcibly compelling treatment.

Moderator: Dennis Reilly

Speaker: Judge Jared Rice, Dimitra Sorvatzioti

Different Approaches to treatment

Elaborating on their Keynote presentation from Day 1, this panel aims to further dialogue with Matt & Sam on their vision for unique approaches to addiction treatment and recovery models.

We will explore the offerings of Gwekwaadziwin Miikan, an Indigenous land-based mental health and addictions program, located on Mnidoo Mnising, within the Robinson-Huron treaty area.

The interplay of community wilderness; in-patient curriculum on campus; and after-care transitions will showcase a unique approach to client-centered plans of care.


Presenters will describe how immersive land-based initiatives can provide direct observation and foster growth and recovery. The benefits of in-the-field curriculum content will be highlighted, introducing their “Four Directions” and “Seven Grandfathers”, for teens and adults, respectively.


Matt & Sam will lead us to a better understanding of how “the connection to one’s land, the cultural identity, and community can be critical to one’s recovery”.

The Panelists may be asked to draw on their experiences with shared teachings, foraging and food to illuminate the backdrop for inspiring client-centered growth.

Moderator: Andre Rivard and Jennifer Graham

Speaker: Matt Maracle, Sam Gilchrist

Progressive Approaches to treating addiction


Dr. Mai will discuss an innovative opioid use disorder treatment using Sublocade in combination with harm-reduction and holistic addiction treatment approaches. Dr. Mai addresses the physical and psychological aspects of addiction using this cutting-edge approach.


Speaker: Dr. Joseph Mai

This panel features renowned practitioners whose approach emphasizes innovative and cutting-edge addictions treatment that is revolutionizing the field. The effective use of unconventional treatment applications such as psilocybin will be discussed in this session.


Moderator: Kym Briggs

Speaker: Dr. Mai, Anne-Marie Armour, Annemarie

2022 Annual Conference Day 3

Topics from 2022 Annual Conference Day 3:

Peers & Recovery Support Panel:

In this session we will explore the value that peer recovery professionals bring to comprehensive treatment/recovery services, including within the criminal justice system, for people impacted by substance use disorder. Using the example of U.S. treatment courts, we will also discuss best practices for integrating peers into service teams.

speakers: Ruth Riddick, Paulette Walker


Kerry Gladue was born in raised in Edmonton, Alberta, and is a second-generation Residential School survivor as well as a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. Kerry will be sharing his inspiring story of addiction and mental health, as well as his upbringing in foster care, and the justice system. Now as a graduate of Calgary Drug Treatment Court and Director of Simon House Recovery Centre, Kerry uses his story in hopes of promoting hope and healing. Kerry is also a published Author, Actor, Husband, and Father.

Speakers: Kerry Gladue