Justice For Vets Briefs VA Chief Counsel

NADCP COO Carson Fox and Justice For Vets Senior Director Melissa Fitzgerald recently briefed Department of Veterans Affairs Chief Counsel Leigh Bradley on Veterans Treatment Courts.

The meeting provided an opportunity to thank the VA for its continued and invaluable support of Veterans Treatment Courts, as well as discuss emerging trends and key issues facing the courts.

The meeting came several weeks before VA Secretary Robert McDonald is scheduled to keynote the Opening Ceremony of Vet Court Con, to be held outside Washington, DC from July 27-30. (Register here)

“The VA has been a critical partner for Justice For Vets, and most importantly for Veterans Treatment Courts across the country,” said Fitzgerald. “Justice For Vets is honored to continue our collaboration with the VA to ensure that Veterans Treatment Courts are taking full advantage of all the VA has to offer.”

The VA’s Veterans Justice Outreach (VJO) program has been instrumental in the growth and success of Veterans Treatment Courts. The VA created the VJO Program to avoid the unnecessary incarceration among Veterans by ensuring that eligible justice-involved Veterans have timely access to VHA services as clinically indicated. VJO specialists provide direct outreach, assessment, and case management for justice-involved Veterans in local courts and jails, and liaison with local justice system partners.

Last week the Ithaca Voice profiled VJO specialist Kynna Murphy from the VA Medical Center in Syracuse, New York. The article stated, “Since January, Murphy has kept 165 veterans out of the jail system and personally driven them from county jails to treatment centers across the area. In the four years she has been doing this, she’s helped approximately 1,300 veterans.”

“Whether you operate a Drug Court, DWI Court, Mental Health Court, Tribal Healing to Wellness Court, or Veterans Treatment Court, you have veterans on the docket who could benefit from VA services,” said Fox. “Every treatment court in the country should be connected to their local VJO in order to connect veterans to the benefits and treatment they have earned.”

For a comprehensive list of VJO specialists click here.