MERIT (Magistrates Early Referral Into Treatment) has outgrown its current location in the Trades Hall and is relocating. As from today (Monday 18th December), the MERIT team will be working from 265 Argent Street (the old CRS Building) located between Slater & Gordon and CentaCare.
MERIT is a voluntary Court Diversion service. It gives people going before the local Court the chance to address drug and alcohol issues that may have had a part to play in the offence they’ve been charged with. It is a successful program that has many benefits, including reduced drug use, reduced levels of distress, reduced risk of imprisonment and reduced likelihood of re-offence.
MERIT treatment operates in isolation from legal matters. This means signing up for the program is not an admission of guilt. Instead, it gives people a chance to take charge of their lives and complete treatment before the Magistrate decides on a sentence.
Successful MERIT treatment completion is generally viewed favourably by the Magistrate. People who complete a MERIT program are less likely to receive a custodial sentence than people who don’t complete the program.
The MERIT Office is open Monday to Friday from 8am to 4pm (closed public holidays).
To find out more about MERIT, call 8088 7199 or visit 265 Argent Street and have a talk with our friendly staff.