New York City Council Header
File #: Res 0230-2014    Version: * Name: Creation of veterans treatment courts in every county in NYC, including the counties of NY and Richmond.
Type: Resolution Status: Filed (End of Session)
Committee: Committee on Veterans
On agenda: 5/14/2014
Enactment date: Law number:
Title: Resolution calling for the creation of veterans treatment courts in every county in New York City, including the counties of New York and Richmond, to serve and address the increasing needs of the growing veteran population in the City.
Sponsors: Mathieu Eugene, Vincent J. Gentile, Rosie Mendez, Paul A. Vallone, Eric A. Ulrich
Council Member Sponsors: 5
Res. No. 230
 
 
Resolution calling for the creation of veterans treatment courts in every county in New York City, including the counties of New York and Richmond, to serve and address the increasing needs of the growing veteran population in the City.
 
 
By Council Members Eugene, Gentile, Mendez, Vallone and Ulrich
 
Whereas, Veterans across the United States (U.S.) with mental health issues and concerns stemming from their service should receive the same care and attention as those veterans with physical injuries; and
Whereas, According to the National Association of Drug Court Professionals, one in five veterans exhibit symptoms of a mental disorder or a cognitive impairment, while one in six veterans who served in the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq experience issues with substance abuse; and
Whereas, In an effort to address the underlying mental health issues, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), that many veterans face, courts across the U.S. have begun to focus on programs offering alternatives to incarceration for veterans who are charged with non-violent drug offenses and in some cases, service-related crimes; and
Whereas, The country's first veterans treatment court (VTC) was established in Buffalo, New York in January 2008; and
Whereas, On July 7, 2009, New York State Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman, Kings County District Attorney Charles Hynes, Queens County District Attorney Richard Brown and Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice announced the launch of a collaborative effort called the "Veterans Project" for non-violent veteran offenders; and
Whereas, The program was designed "to provide outreach, specialized support services and treatment to divert them from incarceration; offer peer support to sustain engagement in services; and facilitate the exchange of information between legal, clinical and community resources"; and
Whereas, Under this program, former service members are considered for diversion if they have pled guilty to a non-violent crime, do not present a threat to community safety, and are willing to comply with court imposed conditions as an alternative to incarceration; and
Whereas, With the opening of the Bronx Veterans Court in October 2013, there are three veterans treatment courts or the functional equivalent thereof in New York City; and
Whereas, Veterans in all counties of the City would be better served by having equal access in their community to a viable option other than incarceration for non-violent offenses, that includes treatment, rehabilitation and services to help with readjustment to civilian life; now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Council of the City of New York calls for the creation of veterans treatment courts in every county in New York City, including the counties of New York and Richmond, to serve and address the increasing needs of the veteran population in the City.
 
RC/KET 5/2/2014 4:10PM
Res. 1345/2012
LS 1390/2014