September 2018
Spotlight
 
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) researchers are studying veterans in contact with the criminal justice system. Based on the relationships between criminal justice-involvement, homelessness, and mental and behavioral health issues, they believe this population will persist. More than half of veterans in contact with the criminal justice system have either mental health issues (particularly posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, or high anxiety) or substance-use disorders. Dr. Andrea Finlay, a VA researcher with a VA Health Services Research and Development Researcher in Residence grant, is “interested in working with and studying populations of Veterans who may need extra support or guidance to improve their health and lives.” She notes that, although her research focuses on veterans in programs all together, veterans reentering society just out of prison often have different needs than those coming out of jail. 
Research
Kathryn K. Carroll, Ashton M. Lofgreen, Darian C. Weaver, Philip Held, Brian J. Klassen, Dale L. Smith, Niranjan S. Karnik, Mark H. Pollack, and Alyson K. Zalta
This study explored the impact of military sexual trauma (MST) on posttraumatic cognitions among a sample of veterans diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and enrolled in non-VA Intensive Outpatient PTSD Program. In comparison to non-MST participants, veterans who experienced MST had significantly stronger posttraumatic self-blame cognitions even after controlling for PTSD severity and depression. Findings indicate that self-blame beliefs may be an important target for treatment among MST survivors.
 
Elizabeth A. Evans, Dawn L. Glover, Donna L. Washington, and Alison B. Hamilton
The researchers conducted interviews with 22 female veterans to discover the underlying factors that led to comorbid substance use and mental health disorders. Concerns were voiced about past traumas, discrimination, comorbid disorders, socio-economic issues, lack of social support, and struggles with post-military personal identities. The study highlights how non-VA care can be improved.
 
Thomas W. Britt, Kristen J. Black, Janelle H. Cheung, Cynthia L. Pury, and Heidi M. Zinzow
Soldiers from two Army battalions participated in a randomized control trial to test whether specified training reduced perceived stigma regarding mental health treatment. The study found that those who received the additional training had increased supportive behaviors towards fellow soldiers suffering from mental health concerns and were marginally more likely to seek treatment themselves as compared to those without the training.
 
Anne G. Sadler, Ann M. Cheney, Michelle A. Mengeling, Brenda M. Booth, James C. Torner, and Lance Brendan Young
The researchers conducted focus groups with servicemen who had previously been deployed in Afghanistan during Operation Enduring Freedom and Iraq during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Barriers to reporting male sexual assault included the stigma of being attacked as a male soldier, a lack of awareness of the issue, and a lack of confidence in leadership and the reporting process. Members of the Reserve/National Guard experienced greater barriers to reporting than those on active duty.
 
Alison Levin-Rector, Laurel L. Hourani, Richard A. Van Dorn, Robert M. Bray, Robert, Valerie A. Stander, Joel K. Cartwright, Jessica K. Morgan, James Trudeau, and Pamela K. Lattimore
This longitudinal study examines unit and individual level risk and protective factors of PTSD, non PTSD anxiety disorders, depressive disorders, and overall mental health diagnoses among personnel in the Army and Marines Corps. Researchers found that diagnosis of a substance-use disorder while in the military and cumulative deployment time increased risk for all outcomes, while being male and an officer served as protective factors.
Practitioner Publications
Military OneSource
This handout provides resources to promote the maintenance and strengthening of relationships and prevent domestic abuse among military service members and veterans, military spouses, and intimate partners. In these areas, resource links are related to background and research, federal and non-government resources, technology, healthy relationships, child impact, and dating violence.
 
Disabled American Veterans
This one-page flyer lists all of the veterans-specific career fairs hosted by the DAV. This resource can help clinicians and practitioners connect unemployed veterans with opportunities in the job market. Virtual career fairs for those in rural areas are also included!
Multimedia Resources
(Webinars, Podcasts, Online Resources)
Battered Women’s Justice Project
This webpage contains recorded webinars, tools, and guides related to intimate partner violence involving military personnel and veterans and their families.
 
Military OneSource
This page gives a brief overview of the “Know the Signs” campaign and provides clinicians and practitioners access to interactive tools, a social media toolkit, awareness campaign materials (handouts, brochures, flyers), and resources to actively participate in Domestic Violence Prevention Month.
 
Department of Veterans Affairs
This app was created by the VA for clinicians and practitioners treating female veterans. The app gives brief overviews of specific issues faced by female veterans, a history of women in the military, and suggestions and resources for connecting female veterans with help and increasing understanding.
 
Department of Veterans Affairs
This app helps servicemembers and veterans set goals for reducing alcohol intake. The app includes a variety of tools focused on sticking to goals, including the ability to track progress, manage emotional symptoms, and get support.
 
Veteran on the Move
This podcast conveys the stories of “veterans on the move” through approximately 200 interviews. This resource is aimed at showing the different ways veterans can capitalize on their experiences and successfully transition from the military to civilian entrepreneurship.
 
Department of Veterans Affairs
This poster is free to the public and is a great way of advertising upcoming Veterans Day (November 11). The included art won the VA’s annual competition; past winning art can be viewed on the VA's website .
Policy
Signed into law by President Trump on 9/17/2018, this bi-partisan bill orders the Secretary of Veterans of Affairs to hire additional veterans justice outreach coordinators (VJOs) for the purpose of increasing veterans’ access to problem-solving treatment courts, including veterans treatment courts.
In the News
Events Calendar
Multiple Dates and Locations: Recruit Military Veteran Job Fairs
October 5-6: Westcliffe, CO Backpacking the Venable and Comanche Loop
October 5-7: Rend Lake, Mount Vernon, IL Paralyzed Veterans of America Bass Tour Stop
October 6: Livermore, CA Cycling 4 Veterans – Las Positas College
October 10: Raleigh, NC United We Farm, NC Veterans Conference
October 12-14: Groton, MA Women Veterans Retreat
October 15: Beaumont, CA NFL Legends Charity Golf Tournament
October 19: Riverside, CA A Veteran’s Night Reade
October 19 – 20: Austin, TX 2nd Women Veterans Flight
October 27 – 28: Gabriel Farm, Circleville, OH Dan Fout Memorial Hunt
October 29-November 4: Des Moines, IA National Veterans Creative Arts Competition & Festival
October 29 – December 7: Jacksonville, FL Invisible Becoming Visible: An Exhibition of Veterans’ Art
 

October 2, 2018 - Athens, OH
October 3, 2018 - Louisville, KY            
October 4, 2018 - Dubuque, IA
October 4, 2018 - Durango, CO
October 4, 2018 - Havre, MT    
October 4, 2018 - Port Angeles, WA
October 5, 2018 - Centreville, MI          
October 5, 2018 - Chicago, IL   
October 5, 2018 - Cold Spring, KY         
October 5, 2018 - Eugene, OR  
October 5 - 7, 2018 - Ferndale, CA        
October 5, 2018 - Houston, TX
October 5, 2018 - Johnson City, TN       
October 5, 2018 - Marion, IN
October 5, 2018 - Red Rock, OK             
October 5, 2018 - Springfield, MA
October 6, 2018 - Freeport, IL 
October 6, 2018 - Guadalupe, AZ          
October 6 - 7, 2018 - Libby, MT             
October 6, 2018 - Peoria, IL     
October 10, 2018 - Las Vegas, NV         
October 10, 2018 - Wheeling, WV         
October 11, 2018 - Bakersfield, CA       
October 11, 2018 - Fayetteville, AR      
October 11, 2018 - Lexington, KY
October 11, 2018 - Memphis, TN
October 12, 2018 - Anderson, IN           
October 12, 2018 - Farmington, NM     
October 12, 2018 - Hartford, MI            
October 12, 2018 - New Castle, PA       
October 12, 2018 - Salt Lake City, UT   
October 12, 2018 - Walla Walla, WA    
October 13, 2018 - Augusta, ME            
October 13, 2018 - Latham, NY
October 13, 2018 - Newark, NJ
October 16, 2018 - Colorado Springs, CO             
October 16, 2018 - Columbus, OH
October 16 - 18, 2018 - Dixon, CA         
October 16, 2018 - Lincoln, NE
October 16, 2018 - Warren, OH             
October 18, 2018 - Bloomington, IN
October 18, 2018 - Gaylord, MI
October 18, 2018 - Miami, FL  
October 18, 2018 - Sherman, TX           
October 19, 2018 - Anchorage, AK        
October 19, 2018 - Austin, TX 
October 19, 2018 - Battle Creek, MI     
October 19, 2018 - Charleston, SC
October 19, 2018 - Greenville, NC
October 19 - 21, 2018 - Spring Hill, FL
October 19, 2018 - Tuscaloosa, AL
October 19, 2018 - Wentworth, NC      
October 20, 2018 - Mankato, MN          
October 20, 2018 - Boise, ID    
October 20, 2018 - Nashville, TN          
October 20, 2018 - Pendleton, OR         
October 20, 2018 - Santa Maria, CA      
October 20, 2018 - Sells, AZ     
October 20, 2018 - Toledo, OH
October 20, 2018 - Troutdale, OR         
October 20, 2018 - Yakima, WA
October 24, 2018 - Lorain, OH 
October 24, 2018 - Yuma, AZ
October 25 - 26, 2018 - Albuquerque, NM             
October 25 - 27, 2018 - Anderson, CA  
October 25, 2018 - Cheyenne, WY        
October 25, 2018 - Denton, TX
October 26, 2018 - Augusta, GA             
October 26, 2018 - Fort Walton Beach, FL
October 26, 2018 - Fort Wayne, IN       
October 26, 2018 - Grand Junction, CO
October 26, 2018 - Los Angeles, CA
October 26, 2018 - Poplar Bluff, MO    
October 26, 2018 - Rockford, IL
October 26, 2018 - Spartanburg, SC     
October 26, 2018 - St. Cloud, MN
October 26, 2018 - Warrenton, OR       
October 27, 2018 - Madison, WI            
October 27, 2018 - New Orleans, LA
October 27, 2018 - Pocatello, ID
Contribute to the Next Issue
To submit content for the next issue of this newsletter, please email ndcrc@american.edu with "Veterans’ Justice and Mental Health Newsletter” in the subject line.
Our mission is to inform policy, practice, and scholarship through the distribution of current veterans treatment court-related resources.   
The  National Drug Court Resource, Policy, and Evidence-Based Practice Center , funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance and operated by the Justice Programs Office (JPO) at American University, strives to provide practitioners and professionals working in the drug court field with current resources and upcoming events.  Please email  ndcrc@american.edu  with any inquiries.
National Drug Court Resource Center | Justice Programs Office
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