For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 21

The reason for this is threefold: first, Erie County
Adult Probation cannot supervise in other states
and counties; second, it would be impossible for
urine drops to be centralized and supervised;
and finally, if there had to be a referral to a
community provider the Erie County Office of
Drug and Alcohol cannot fund a non-resident.
Once the person is accepted and a
treatment plan has been developed, a guilty plea
and sentencing is scheduled. That event begins
the Veterans Court journey. Much like civilian
drug and mental health courts, the participant
is subject to random urine tests. Services are
provided and it is expected that the participant
will engage in the services provided. Similarly, the
Veterans Court participant is on a weekly court
appearance schedule until he or she phases up
at which time the court obligations are reduced.
All of this is done with the idea that after 1 to 1
and ½ years, the participant will graduate from
Veterans Court. Upon graduation, the Court
will look at reducing the graduate's sentence or
giving early discharge as the savings in court costs
assists the graduate as they move forward with
their lives.
Erie County Veterans Court has 12 active
participants in the 3 phases of the program.
On the days the participants report, they and
their mentors appear before the Court and
discuss what the participant has done since the
Judge last saw them. The Judge also positively
reinforces those activities the participant has
engaged in that are good for his or her recovery
and discusses with them those behaviors that are
unfavorable to his or her recovery. Depending
on the negative behavior the participant can be
reprimanded, given community service hours or
in the extreme, detained.
The primary thing that is stressed with
the participants is honesty. Programming and
services cannot be delivered if the participant
is not accurately reporting use or symptoms.
Assessments are self-reporting and often, the
appropriate level of care cannot be offered until
and unless the participant is open and honest.
Otherwise, the appropriate services may not
be afforded until there is a relapse or a mental
health crisis which causes the team to act.

Erie County learned valuable lessons in
regard to the structure and implementation of a
Veterans Court which other counties developing
Veterans Court should heed. First, all team
members should receive training specifically
designed for Veterans Court. Erie County utilizes
people who were familiar with adult drug and
mental health courts but have little experience
with a veteran population. The need for team
training became more evident as the two judges
who were trained in Veterans Court no longer
participate with the program.29 Part of the
reason for lack of training was a sense of urgency
in starting the program but more deliberate
thought and action would have put Erie's Court
further ahead at the start.
A lengthier planning stage would have
permitted a stronger network with local
veteran's groups to generate not only funding
but mentors. Mentorship is an essential part of
a successful Veterans Court. The mentors are
sounding boards for the participants and can
provide insight and assistance as the participant
navigates the program and services. Though
there are mentors in Erie County, it is a struggle
to find a mentor fit and some participants
go through the program for a period of time
without a mentor.
Another issue is that with all services flowing
through the Veteran's Affairs Medical Center,
the program is hamstrung in part due to lack
of inpatient services. The Erie Veteran's Affairs
Medical Center does not have inpatient drug
and alcohol or mental health treatment. If those
services are required, Erie is reliant upon the
willingness of the other Pennsylvania centers
which have inpatient treatment to make
available inpatient treatment beds.30
Though the VJO is good at his job, he is
responsible for 9 other counties in 3 states. The
Erie Veteran's Affairs Medical Center does not
have blended case managers which would be
helpful to some of the participants.31 It is hoped
going forward that the VJO will receive assistance
and a case manager program for Veterans Court
will be developed.
It is encouraged that those counties without
a Veterans Court begin taking inventory of

Vol. 3, Issue 1

l

For The Defense

21



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018

Contents
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 1
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 2
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - Contents
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 4
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 5
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 6
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 7
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 8
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 9
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 10
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 11
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 12
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 13
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 14
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 15
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 16
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 17
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 18
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 19
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 20
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 21
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 22
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 23
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 24
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 25
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 26
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 27
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 28
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 29
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 30
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 31
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 32
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 33
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 34
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 35
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 36
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 37
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 38
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 39
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 40
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 41
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 42
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 43
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 44
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 45
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 46
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 47
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 48
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 49
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 50
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 51
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 52
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 53
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 54
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 55
For the Defense - Volume 3, Issue 1 - 2018 - 56
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol7_issue4_2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol7_issue3_2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol7_issue2_2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol7_issue1_2022
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol6_issue4_2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol6_issue3_2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol6_issue2_2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol6_issue1_2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol5_issue4_2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol5_issue3_2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol5_issue2_2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol5_issue1_2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol4_issue4_2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol4_issue3_2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol4_issue2_2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol4_issue1_2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol3_issue4_2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol3_issue3_2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol3_issue2_2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol3_issue1_2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pacdl/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol2_issue4_2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pacdl/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol2_issue3_2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pacdl/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol2_issue2_2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/pacdl/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol2_issue1_2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol1_issue4_2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol1_issue3_2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol1_issue2_2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/PACDL/FORTHEDEFENSE_vol1_issue1_2016
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com