Nassau County Presiding Officer Richard Nicolello joined with Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder and Members of the Republican caucus to announce proposed legislation to aid local veterans.
The proposed measure will correct for the absence of an identifier designating veteran status on police records. Checking the box for this vital identifier ensures a veteran’s case be potentially directed to Nassau County’s Veterans Treatment Court and will possibly enable the receipt of other necessary veterans’ services.
“Honoring our Veterans means not only recognizing the tremendous sacrifices they have made, but respecting the hardships military members often face,” said Presiding Officer Nicolello, “The goal of this measure is to ensure veterans be appropriately identified in the criminal justice system and have access to critical services”.
“It is imperative that we help our veterans who may be struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues as a result of their service,” said Police Commissioner Ryder. “Having this identifier as part of our law enforcement records ensures that veterans charged with non-violent misdemeanor offenses get the services that they so rightly earned and deserve.”
The Nassau County Veterans Treatment Court was established to assist veterans arrested and charged with non-violent, misdemeanor offenses stemming from combat related mental health and substance abuse issues. Currently, there is no framework to identify Veteran status necessary to streamline a veteran towards this Court and other services.
Shown in photo above, left to right: Nassau County Legislators Howard J. Kopel and C. William Gaylor III, Nassau Veterans Service Agency Director Ralph Esposito, Legislator John R. Ferretti, Jr., Presiding Officer Nicolello and Legislator Tom McKevitt.