When you look up the word “honor” in the Cambridge Dictionary, one of the example sentences used in the definition is, “We fought for the honor of our country.” Our veterans fought for this country for many different and personal reasons, but one universal reason was to protect our way of life. We owe so much to these brave individuals and always need to honor our veteran’s sacrifices, which are often underappreciated or forgotten.
The Best Way to Honor our Veterans: Remember Them
It can be a very challenging time for Veterans to readjust to civilian life after being in the military. There is often a loss of purpose and community associated with this transition. These soldiers leave an environment where they not only had a sense of purpose but also the unique support system and camaraderie they had with their fellow soldiers every day. It’s a tremendous adjustment, and they shouldn’t have to face it on their own.
A Different Set of Challenges to Face
As much as soldiers never knew what they could face, they were at least always prepared for it. When reintegrating back into civilian life, veterans face many new and daunting challenges:
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Transition stress
- Chronic Adjustment Disorder
- Finding a career that they are qualified for and interested in
- Routine visits to Veterans Affairs for physical or mental needs
- Financial and housing concerns
- Reconnecting with family and friends
These are all formidable obstacles for anyone to face and can quickly become overwhelming. Unfortunately, these issues can contribute to and lead to substance abuse. 6.2% of veterans (1.3 million people) had a Substance Use Disorder (SUD) in 2019. They either misuse prescribed medicines or turn to alcohol and illegal drugs. Not only is this detrimental to their overall health, but it also leads to legal problems in many cases.
As it is with anyone suffering from a SUD, veterans can make poor decisions while under the effects of drugs or alcohol. They may commit a crime as a result of being under the influence of a substance or to obtain more. It is a terrible cycle that requires help from others break.
EAC Network Offers Assistance
We need to assist as well as honor our veterans. An estimated 60% of incarcerated veterans struggle with a SUD, which is an upsetting percentage that needs drastic improvement.
Since 2000, EAC Network recognized this need and has been taking action with the Brooklyn Misdemeanor Veterans Treatment Court (BMVTC). Our Veterans have many complicated issues due to their years of service, which are often compounded by the difficulties of readjusting to civilian life.
Our mission is to transfer as many veteran cases to the BMVTC as possible and help them get discharge upgrades, employment, housing, VA benefits, and substance abuse services.
Leave No One Behind
“No Man Left Behind” is a message and a reminder for us all. Our veterans lived by this code when serving and sacrificing for our country; we must do the same for them. None of us can know what it is like to walk a mile in veteran’s boots, but we all know what can come from helping someone in need.
Reach out to EAC to be put in touch with our Brooklyn Misdemeanor Veterans Treatment Court or any of our other helpful services