Advancing National Service

This Florida Jail Is Giving Vets a Second Chance

February 25, 2014
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This Florida Jail Is Giving Vets a Second Chance
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Veterans who land in the Pasco County Jail stay in a separate wing and receive special services.

The rough return to civilian life after military service too often puts faltering veterans on the wrong side of the law. But many believe those who have served their country should have another chance to turn their lives around. That’s why the Pasco County Jail in Land O’ Lakes, Fla., has created a separate pod to house 32 veteran inmates together and offer them therapy, substance abuse help, job training, and housing assistance so that when they get out, they can land on their feet.

Sheriff Chris Nocco told Eddie Daniels of the Tampa Tribune, “They served their country; they have proven to us as a nation that they can do the right thing. This is about an opportunity for them to lift themselves up, back on their feet again, and be productive members of society.”

Several other communities are trying to help veterans who’ve landed in trouble with the law. Law enforcement officials have established special courts just for military veterans in Philadelphia, Buffalo, N.Y., San Diego and elsewhere.

Brian Anderson of Pasco County Veterans Services told Daniels, “They actually sacrificed part of themselves for the better cause of America. … Some of the issues they’re facing that lands them in predicaments like this are probably attributed to the service they gave.”

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