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Legal Advocacy/Initiatives

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GI Rights Hotline: Military Discharges and Military Counseling

The GI Rights Network is a private, nonprofit, nongovernmental organization with civilian counselsors who answer calls from military personnel and their families. There are many reasons for these calls to include:  recruitment, discharges, separations, mobilization, unauthorized absences, AWOL, harassment and discrimination. Their site includes a comprehensive list of military service regulations and fact sheets.  GI Rights Network advertises free and confidential call service.

Phone number:  1-877-447-4487

E-Mail:  girights@girightshotline.org

External Website: GI Rights Hotline

National Women's Law Center

The National Women's Law Center works to expand opportunities for female service members to include better prevention and detection of sexual harassment and assault, and elimination of all forms of sex discrimination, including discrimination based on pregnancy and parental status.

External Website: National Women's Law Center

Stateside Legal "Women with Military Service" Online Resources

Stateside Legal's "Women with Military Service" project was successfully completed and launched on June 14, 2016.  It offers a wealth of legal resources for women veterans, their families and caregivers as well as their advocates.  You can search for close-to-home legal assistance, self-help resources, networks, and more. 

Project History

This legal assistance project began January 2015 and was funded through a Legal Services Corporation two-year grant submitted by Maine's Pine Tree Legal Assistance.  Northeastern University Law Lab was the lead for this project. The web page project description follows:

"This project will engage directly with women veterans and multidisciplinary stakeholders to collaboratively design a mobile technology outreach tool that provides underserved women veterans with information about their legal rights and available benefits. The tool will build upon the resources available through Stateside Legal's Women Who Serve initiative, and will be designed for outreach to all underserved women veterans, including those who are homeless and those suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and military sexual trauma (MST). The ultimate goal of this project is to measurably increase the number of low-income women veterans who contact Stateside Legal for help, thereby enabling legal aid programs and law school clinics to provide the assistance that many low-income women veterans and their families need."

Visit the Northeastern University Law Lab "Women Veterans Outreach Tool for more information about the completed project.

External Website: Stateside Legal "Women with Military Service" Resources

Veterans Treatment Court: Justice for Vets

Justice For Vets is a professional services division of the National Association of Drug Court professionals, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in Alexandria, Virginia.  Justice For Vets is an initiative to work with the civil criminal justice system to effectively identify, assess, and respond to all justice-involved veterans appropriately.  They help communities bring together local, state and federal resources to directly serve veterans involved in the justice system due to substance abuse, mental illness, or trauma. Their goal is to establish Veterans Treatment Court within reach of every veteran in need.

Veterans Treatment Court Locator   

The Justice for Vets program partners with the Veterans Administration through their Veterans Justice Outreach Program efforts and a network of state Veterans Justice Outreach Specialists.

External Website: Justice for Vets

Veterans Court Resource Guide

The National Center for State Courts (NCSC) noted that "The first Veterans Court opened in Buffalo, N.Y. in 2008. The Veterans Court model is based on drug treatment and/or mental health treatment courts. Substance abuse or mental health treatment is offered as an alternative to incarceration. Typically, veteran mentors assist with the programs. An important issue that has to be addressed is the eligibility for Veterans Court in terms of whether charges involving felonies or crimes of violence will be allowed. The inclusion of offenders charged with inter-family violence is also of grave concern to policy makers."

The NCSC's comprehensive online Veterans Court Resource Guide also includes contacts for non-digitized publications.


Female Veterans in the Criminal Justice System (July 2016)

Similar and Other Resources (Intimate Partner Violence, Military Sexual Violence/Trauma, and Available Resources)

External Website: National Center for State Courts