Incarcerated Veterans Transition Program Gives Veterans Second Chance

The Department of Labor (DOL) is funding the Incarcerated Veterans Transition Program (IVTP), which will be managed by the Philadelphia Veterans Multi-Service and Education Center (PVMSEC). The program helps veterans who have been in prison. Possibly more significantly, the program also helps those who are still facing criminal charges as an alternative to sentencing. The program was designed to prevent homelessness among veterans, which is a very rampant problem.

More veterans than ever are returning from combat suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). Many times soldiers returning from combat and suffering from these issues find themselves in trouble with the law. The IVTP seeks to help these veterans as many find themselves homeless following their prison terms.

Tens of thousands of soldiers end up detained in State and Federal prisons; and when that happens, veterans are not given the chance to be fully diagnosed and therefore treated for conditions such as PTSD and TBI. Diagnosis and treatment may very well have prevented incarceration in the first place.

In 2004, there were approximately 140,000 veterans locked up in State and Federal prisons. Additionally,

  • 46% of veterans in federal, and 15% of veterans in state prisons, are incarcerated for drug offenses;
  • 61% of locked up veterans meet the psychological diagnostic requirements for substance dependence or abuse;
  • Over 50% of the veterans serving time in federal prisons served in the military during wartime; and
  • At least 10% of all inmates are veterans.

Ideally, there would be perfect communication between VA doctors and those doctors associated with the courts and responsible for providing medical care to prisoners. Veterans cannot be brought back from these wars and left alone to deal with their conditions, which are a direct result of their participation in these wars.

The IVTP can and will play a crucial role in many veterans’ lives. Veterans have to be treated before they get to the point of addiction and poor choices because of their mental state. Homelessness will not end in the veteran population without more proactive measures.

If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, contact Veterans Help Group. You may be entitled to certain programs and benefits so contact our veterans disability rights firm today.