The TASC (Treatment Alternatives to Street Crimes) model was created in 1972 as a national effort to identify substance-abusing offenders, provide treatment monitoring, case management, and urinalysis, and create a bridge between the criminal justice and substance abuse treatment systems. During this time, local court officials in four of Ohio’s metropolitan counties initiated TASC projects with Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA) grants but were unable to sustain them when appropriations for LEAA ended.
Because over 50% of the individuals seeing substance abuse treatment are involved in the criminal justice system, the Ohio Department of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Services (ODADAS) re-established TASC programming in 1991. Presently, there are 14 TASC projects operating in 18 urban and rural counties. OMHAS, formerly known as ODADAS, has invested over $64 Million in TASC operations since 1991.
In 1991, the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), the National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors (NASADAD), and a panel of experts defined an appropriately functioning TASC program as one that includes the following 10 Critical Elements:
- A broad base of support within the criminal justice system with a protocol for continued and effective communication.
- A broad base of support within the treatment system with a protocol for continued and effective communication.
- An independent TASC unit with a designated administrator.
- Policies and procedures for required staff training.
- A data collection system to be used in program management and evaluation.
- A number of agreed upon offender eligibility criteria.
- Procedures for the identification of eligible offenders that stress early justice and treatment intervention.
- Documented procedures for assessment and referral.
- Documented policies and procedures for random urinalysis and other physical tests.
- Procedures for offender monitoring that include criteria for success/failure, required frequency of contact, schedule of reporting and notification of termination to the justice system.
The Lucas County TASC Program was established in 1992 as a department within the Toledo/Lucas County Criminal Justice Coordinating Council. In 1996, TASC separated from CJCC and formed the first free-standing non-profit TASC program in Ohio.
On January 1, 2012, Lucas County TASC, Inc. changed its name to TASC of Northwest Ohio and adopted contemporary expansion Treatment Accountability for Safer Communities. Currently, TASC operates 15 separate projects, has a staff of 25 and a budget of approximately $2.4 million. In addition to the main office at 701 Jefferson Street, TASC operates satellite offices at Toledo Municipal Court and the Lucas County Jail.