Consistent with New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal’s 21-21 Community Policing Project in which all 21 County Prosecutor’s Offices conduct educational programs for the communities in which they serve, on December 3, 2019 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm, the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office hosted a community event at the Presbyterian Church in Morristown concerning the New Jersey Statewide Veterans Diversion Program.
Followed by opening remarks provided by Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp, Supervising Assistant Prosecutor LaJuan Tucker of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office gave a presentation to the audience on the New Jersey Statewide Veterans Diversion Program, providing an in depth explanation of the legal aspects surrounding the program.
The Veterans Diversion Program was established by law in the state of New Jersey, which went into effect on December 1, 2017. Its purpose is to divert eligible veterans of the United States Armed Forces away from the criminal justice system and toward appropriate case management and mental health services as early as possible following certain criminal allegations. Generally, the program partners the law enforcement and social services communities to assist eligible veterans.
The presentation also included representatives from various local organizations who offered valuable information about available services to veterans, some of which include mental health treatment programs, housing assistance, employment assistance, and family support counseling. These representatives included: Morris County Veterans Service Officer Kenneth Brenzel; Clinician Geri Moss of Outpatient Behavioral Health-True North; Jenn Stivers, Supportive Services for Veteran Families Director from Community Hope; and Scott Dadaian, Outreach Program Specialist from the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Prosecutor Knapp stated, “Our veterans have made and continue to make many personal sacrifices, and unfortunately these sacrifices sometimes have adverse consequences. The Statewide Veterans Diversion Program acknowledges this unfortunate result and is tailored to address the unique issues that our veterans face today.”
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