Under the appropriations bill, Sec. 26 (b) $250,000 each year is for grants to the Veterans Defense Project. Grants must be used to support, through education and outreach, military veterans who are involved with the criminal justice system. These are onetime appropriations.
There will be three areas of specific activities the VDP will conduct as part of this project: (1) Training veterans treatment court (VTC) staff and other court staff who have regular contact with criminally involved veterans to ensure they have the cultural and technical competence to use the offense as an intervention point; (2) to assist the judicial system in expanding VTCs to counties that currently do not have VTCs by working directly with the counties and by building support for VTCs at the Minnesota Supreme Court and wider judicial system; and (3) working with the courts to ensure county VTCs are using consistent models that provide predictable and fair outcomes that do not differ widely from county to county.
The following is information on the three largest Veterans Treatment Courts in Minnesota. If you or anyone you know, know of a veteran that is having an issue in one of these counties that the courts may be able to address, please do not hesitate to reach out and refer. It costs nothing to observe each court and consider if it is a good fit or not.
All we can say is that they are changing peoples lives. We will also note that there are Veterans Treatment courts in St Louis, Sterns, and Carver Counties as well as in the 5th Judicial district and one is in the works for the 3rd district.
Please look at our Media section for articles on veterans that lives have been changed by participating, right here in Minnesota and across the country.