Most military members return to civilian life and lead happy, healthy and productive lives. But for those who experience Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and related illnesses, the transition can be overwhelming. The University of Baltimore School of Law and the Judicial Institute of Maryland recently sponsored a judicial conference titled, “Veterans’ Needs: The Current State of Veterans in Our Courts,” which was held March 15-17, 2015. Judges from the Maryland judiciary, both appellate and trial, attended the conference, as well as 40 out-of-state judges representing more than 20 jurisdictions.
The purpose of the program was to educate judges about the effects of PTSD and TBI on veterans and their families, and to examine the needs of justice-involved veterans. Judges examined the Veterans Treatment Court model, and discussed how these courts are being implemented across the country to link veterans with federal, state, and local resources. Speakers included experts from the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Johns Hopkins Medical Center, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Maryland legislature, as well as students and faculty of the Bob Parsons Veterans Advocacy Clinic. The law school is pleased to bring together judges, scientists, lawmakers, faculty, and students to discuss strategies to assist veterans and their families.