Formal Release: Veteran Treatment Courts

On Tuesday, May 17th at 1:00 p.m. there will be the formal release of the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) publication “Veterans Treatment Courts: A Second Chance for Vets Who Have Lost Their Way.”


It is to be held at the Bureau of Prisons, 400 First Street NW, Washington, D.C. in the first floor training room (A, B and C).  Please arrive no later than 20 minutes prior to the start of the event to allow time to pass through security.


The publication was produced in partnership by NIC, a division of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), and the Veterans Health Council of Vietnam Veterans of America (VVA). The report is based on a series of interviews and personal observations of the judges, veterans, and veterans advocates who have been intimately involved in the founding and operation of veterans treatment courts. In this book, they relay how these courts are “the right thing to do” for justice-involved veterans who commit certain crimes associated with the lingering legacy of their wartime experiences.


Court staff and graduates of veterans treatment court programs describe, in often exquisite detail, what their roles are and how they have come to embrace the concept that these courts, which use a carrot-and-stick approach to rehabilitate rather than overtly punish veteran defendants, represent what one veteran in Buffalo, New York, a key player in the creation of the first of these courts in the nation, has called “the most profound change in the attitude of our criminal justice system towards veterans in the history of this country.”


This publication was authored by Bernard Edelman, Deputy Director for Policy and Government Affairs, VVA; and consultant Dr. Tom Berger, Executive Director of VVA’s Veterans Health Council.




Bernard Edelman, Author, Vietnam Veterans of America

Thomas J. Berger, Ph.D., Consultant, Vietnam Veterans of America

Honorable Robert Russell, Jr., Erie County Court Judge, Buffalo, New York

Melissa Fitzgerald, Senior Director, Justice For Vets

Patrick Welch, Ph.D., Lead Mentor, Buffalo Veterans Treatment Court

Nicholas Stefanovic, Judicial Assessment Specialist, Rochester Veterans Treatment Court



Greg Crawford, NIC Project Manager


Please RSVP by close of business by Thursday, May 12th to