NewsRoom
6:25 pm
Tue September 11, 2012

State Legislature Gives Green Light to Veterans Courts

Military veterans in Michigan could soon have a network of courts to deal specifically with issues affecting them.

The state Senate unanimously passed two bills Tuesday - on the anniversary of 9/11 – which set up a framework for creating veterans courts. Judges would be able to recommend non-violent offenders to rehabilitation programs instead of jail. Senator Rick Jones says vets are forced to deal with extraordinary challenges, both overseas and once they’re home

“With the veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, some of them have suffered head injuries," he explains. "Certainly, we must make sure if they get into trouble with alcohol or drugs that we have a deferral program.”

There are a few veterans courts in Michigan already, but the measures would make sure they all operate under the same rules. The bills also unanimously passed the state House in May. They now go to the governor’s desk.