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Michael Petruzzelli

, National Council for Behavioral Health

Bipartisan Group Introduces Veterans’ Treatment Courts Legislation in the House

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Bipartisan legislation introduced in the House would authorize veterans’ treatment courts, helping veterans living with addiction and other mental health conditions receive specialized care when accused of certain nonviolent crimes. The Servicemember Assistance for Lawful Understanding, Treatment and Education (SALUTE) Act would give the Justice Department important guidance on veterans’ treatment courts funding and will help make sure these programs are being implemented effectively.

“One in five veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan will experience a stress-related mental illness, and many others will fall victim to drug and alcohol abuse,” said Congressman Patrick Meehan (R-PA). “We owe it to these veterans to ensure they get the care and treatment they earned for serving our nation. And we can help nonviolent offenders struggling with addiction or other crises avoid becoming entrapped in the criminal justice system, keeping them from getting the care they need.”

Representative Meehan was joined by eight of his colleagues in supporting this legislation. He was joined by Reps. Mike Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Ryan Costello (R-PA), Chaka Fattah (D-PA), Larry Buschon (R-IN), John Carney (D-DE), Paul Tonko (D-NY), Barbara Comstock (R-VA) and Grace Napolitano (D-CA).