Magistrates Early Referral Into Treatment Program (MERIT)

The Magistrates Early Referral Into Treatment (MERIT) Program is a three month Court Diversion Program for people with criminal charges before the Local Court, who also have an illicit drug use issue.

Referrals for the MERIT Program

Referrals for the MERIT program can be via self-referral, Police referrals, Magistrate referral or through other agencies.  Following a comprehensive assessment, a treatment plan may be devised and submitted to the Magistrates who will determine suitability for participation in MERIT.  MERIT Bail conditions may be endorsed by the Magistrate.

What Treatment Options are Available?

Treatment opportunities are assessed by the need of the individuals.

These may include:

  • Community withdrawal management
  • Residential detoxification program referral
  • Residential rehabilitation programs
  • Counselling
  • Relapse prevention strategies
  • Opioid Substitution Treatments
  • Case management and referrals for other required supportive services.

Services available at these locations

All Mid North Coast Local Health district areas

Phone 1300 662263

Referrals accepted Monday – Friday 8.30am – 5.00pm