Veteran Courts

Veterans’ treatment courts are designed to assist defendants with the complex treatment needs associated with substance abuse, mental health, and other issues unique to the traumatic experience of war. Some veterans returning home from war find it difficult to assimilate back into the community. Veterans with untreated substance abuse or mental health illnes, including those with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injury (TBI), may find it even harder to return to their home lives which can sometimes lead to criminal activity. Veterans’ treatment courts are based on the drug court/problem-solving court model yet they rely heavily on the use of mentors – other veterans in the community who volunteer to support defendants with one-to-one time and attention. Veterans’ treatment courts leverage resources available from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to serve these offenders treatment needs. As of November 2012 Florida has eight veterans treatment courts in operation, two of which are operating as a part of drug court and/or mental health court.