In response to the increase of OIF/OEF veterans entering the criminal justice system, a handful of courts across the nation began to form veteran-specific court programs. In 2011, the Veterans Treatment Court at the Montgomery County Court of Common Pleas (Veterans Court) in Pennsylvania was established.
Despite great efforts by the Veterans’ Administration and veteran-led non-profits to provide mental health care for veterans, the stigma remains in insidious ways. The implicit encouragement of veterans to remain mum about mental illnesses is particularly troubling when one considers that the rate of mental illnesses among veterans is more than double that of average Americans. So, why is the Department of Defense tacitly promoting a culture of silence around mental health counseling and disadvantaging those who seek counseling in promotions and security clearances?