The nature of asymmetrical warfare, defined as conflicts between nations or groups that have disparate military capabilities and strategies, has significantly altered the patterns of post-service challenges faced by veterans. Asymmetrical warfare in both the Iraq and Afghanistan theaters − defined by improvised explosive devices and indirect fire attacks − have created a threat that is constant and difficult to define. Although the way our nation deals with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) medically is well documented, the judicial challenges are not as apparent. Most recently, our nation has responded to this challenge with an alternative court, the Veterans Trauma Court (VTC), modeled on longstanding drug courts. The VTC offers a legal solution to the complex problems faced by our justice-involved veterans, particularly those suffering from TBI and PTSD. Close examination of the operations and mechanics of a VTC reveals both strengths and weaknesses. Only by acknowledging the VTC’s weaknesses can the system be improved so that it ensures an effective judicial option that best serves veterans.With over 424, 228 veterans, Colorado presents an apt case study for the veterans court system. Rather than delving into the epidemiology of PTSD and TBI, which has been… Read full this story
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