Veterans Treatment Court saves lives and gives purpose

Written by Andre’ Haynes, Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce

“I don’t have any family and even though I had to come to court each week because I got in trouble with the law, the Judge and staff became my family.”

“I would have lost everything if it had not been for Veterans Court.”

“Veterans court saved my life and gave me purpose.”

“When I got out of the military, I did not know what to do. I was lost.”

Those are some statements that were made by veterans who graduated from Veterans Treatment Court (VTC) in the Las Vegas Municipal Court, Department 6 on Thursday, August 2 at 9:30 a.m. Judge Martin D Hastings and his staff hosted a graduation ceremony for veterans who successfully completed a long and demanding program. The courtroom was filled with dozens of proud and emotional supporters including family, friends, representatives from the City of Las Vegas, Nevada Department of Veterans Services (NDVS), Roxie Johnson and many more. Destiny Beavers from the Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Trooper Jacob Fisher from Nevada Highway Patrol, Southern Command provided Certificates of Recognition for graduates. A volunteer from Quilts of Valor provided quilts for the graduates. Additional supporters of VTC include CurlyTop Baker.

The VTC is a court-supervised program coupled with intensive treatment and supervision for misdemeanor criminal offenders. The VTC targets veterans who enter into the criminal justice system and are identified as having high treatment needs for either substance abuse or mental health issues, to include Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), and are at risk to re-offend without treatment and intervention. The program requires an expected 12 months of successful participation and involves the veteran working jointly with the Court, Community Supervision Officer, treatment providers, the Veterans Health Administration, Veterans Benefit Administration, veterans employment representatives, veterans service organizations, service officers, and other key team members.

The VTC is designed to reduce re-arrests, promote self-sufficiency through employment and education and to help veterans remain in the community as productive and responsible members of society by diversion from prison or jail. Veterans will not be sent to jail if they comply with the conditions of the program and graduate.

Any individual who has ever served in any branch of the United States Armed Forces and is currently charged with a misdemeanor criminal offense can participate in the VTC. The judge, court staff, community supervision officers, treatment counselors and other team members will guide and assist veterans. Anyone who is interested should contact their attorney or advise the court at their initial appearance that they would like to be considered for the program. Veterans may also contact the Court Coordinator at (702) 671-3317 for more information.

Nevada Highway Patrol, Southern Command is a proud Community Partner of the Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce Foundation. If you would like to support the Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce Foundation by making a financial contribution Click Here or to volunteer call (702) 518-8845.

The Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce supports Armed Forces members in Southern Nevada through its official charity, the Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce Foundation, a 501(c)(3) public charity. The mission is to provide programs, offer services and engage in other activities that promote and support community development for Armed Forces members. The Armed Forces Chamber of Commerce Foundation has made a community impact by giving direct financial and in-kind contributions valued at approximately $10,000 to almost 500 underprivileged Armed Forces members plus their families and volunteered 125 hours to support civic organizations and programs.

 

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