State Rep. Ryan Bizzarro, of Millcreek, D-3rd Dist., and another lawmaker will announce a bill that would establish veterans courts across Pennsylvania.
Bizzarro and state Sen. Rob Teplitz, of Daphin and York counties, D-15th Dist., will hold a news conference Tuesday morning in the Capitol Rotunda.
They will will be joined by state Reps. Marty Flynn and Kevin Schreiber; Senior Airman Mark Kephart, a retired U.S. Air Force veteran; Barre Shepp, mentor coordinator of the York County Veterans Treatment Court; and Terry Stokes, veterans court advocate, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Department of Pennsylvania.
Veterans courts help veterans charged with nonviolent crimes who are struggling with addiction, mental illness or co-occurring disorders. Participants in the program are supervised by specialized probation officers and may receive guidance from veteran mentors.
Veterans courts exist in only 18 Pennsylvania counties, including Erie County.
House Bill 2180 and S.B. 1411 would require veterans courts to be established statewide.
– John Guerriero