What is a SAFPF? Substance Abuse Felony Punishment Facility

 In Criminal

Substance Abuse Felony Punishment Facility (SAFPF)

What is SAFPF?

SAFPF stands for “Substance Abuse Felony Punishment Facility” and is referred to as “SAFE P.” Basically, these are lockdown, substance abuse treatment facilities run by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.

SAFPF provides services to qualified felony offenders who have been identified as needing substance abuse treatment. The typical SAFPF participant usually has a history of repeated treatment failures and cannot be treated in less secure environments due to a history of absconding. A high majority of individuals participating in the SAFPF program were on probation when their conditions were modified to place them in SAFPF due to a positive drug test, a new arrest, or other technical violations of probation.

Who is Eligible for SAFPF?

  • Must be court-ordered
  • Must be screened for eligibility prior to admission
  • Assessed as needing restrictive and intensive substance abuse treatment services
  • Any felony offender, except sex offenses and violent offenses
  • Regular or deferred community supervision
  • No pending charges or detainer
  • Exhibit no signs of acute alcohol or drug withdrawal and has been detoxified
  • Must be physically and mentally capable of participation
  • Special needs eligibility includes:
    • Current Axis I diagnosis, or
    • A medical condition requiring additional services, or
    • A severe mobility impairment

What are the Phases of SAFPF?

During the initial phase of the SAFPF program, offenders are placed in a TDCJ facility for six to nine months. Male and female offenders are separated by facility, as well as offenders with special needs. The facility is operated by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice in a prison setting.

Upon completion of the initial phase of the program in the secure facility, offenders are placed in a residential transitional treatment center (TTC) or, if eligible, they could participate in the 4-C program where they are allowed to return home while continuing intensive outpatient treatment. The second phase of the program is designed to focus on continuing treatment and making a successful transition to the community through finding employment, peer support, and family reintegration. Participants then begin attending SAFPF re-entry court.

In the third, and final, phase participants are released to the community to attend aftercare treatment in an outpatient setting for up to 12 additional months and continue to participate in the SAFPF re-entry court. The aftercare phase offers a diverse range of therapeutic, residential, outpatient, and resource programs. The Special Needs program provides educational components that address Axis I mental disorders, as well as personality disorders, medication regimentation, and the interaction of disorders with substances of abuse.

Overall, the program lasts 18 to 24 months before successful completion. Here’s a breakdown of the phases.

SAFPF Phase 1: Institutional

  • Six to nine months in a secure facility

SAFPF Phase 2: Residential

  • Three months either in a residential transitional treatment center (TTC) or at home transitional component
  • Home Component includes:
    • 4-C Program
    • Home visits conducted by SAFPF officers
    • 45 days of 3x week Substance Abuse Therapy
    • 45 days of 2x week Substance Abuse Therapy
    • Random drug testing
    • 2x/week AA meeting
    • 2x/month SAFPF Court appearances
    • 2x/month office visits
    • Monthly visits to job, home, or treatment center, or
  • Residential Transitional Treatment Center

SAFPF Phase 3: Outpatient

  • Nine to 12 months in aftercare
  • Weekly aftercare for 90 days to 6 months
  • Peer support
  • Random drug testing
  • 2x/week AA meetings
  • 2x/month SAFPF Court appearances
  • 2x/month office visits
  • Monthly visits to job, home, or treatment center

What is the SAFPF Re-Entry Court?

The SAFPF re-entry court model is a specialized drug court for SAFPF graduates during the aftercare portion of the SAFPF program.

Participants report a minimum of every two weeks to court to meet with the judge, community supervision officers, and treatment providers. Successes are met with incentives and rewards, while violations are addressed quickly with court sanctions.

When is SAFPF Completion?

Success is measured by the ability of the graduates to remain free of both substance abuse and criminal activity. The addiction to alcohol and drugs tends to be a chronic condition that is prone to relapse. The SAFPF program has proven to be effective in resolving one of the primary causes of criminal behavior and personal destruction in the offender population by eliminating these addictions.

Contact Us

If you are looking for a criminal defense attorney who has experience helping clients enter the SAFPF program instead of going to prison, contact us online:


Also published on Medium.

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