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Wright, Stephen

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As of 2015, over 300 veterans treatment courts have opened across the nation in the United States, providing an alternative to incarceration to eligible justice-involved veterans. Despite the proliferation of veterans courts around the country, research on veteran experiences in veterans court is minimal at best. This study sought to examine veteran experiences in veterans treatment court through interpretive phenomenological analysis. Eight veterans from five western U.S. veterans treatment courts were interviewed regarding the circumstances of their referral to court, the treatment they received, their interactions with their treatment team, and how veteran identity impacted their receipt of treatment. Four themes emerged from the data analysis: 1) Veterans Treatment Court team as non-adversarial; 2) veteran support through identity and camaraderie; 3) challenges with required travel and scheduling; 4) perception of effort and personal responsibility. The findings of this study have implications that span problem-solving court research as well as mental health treatment of justice-involved veterans.


Justice-involved veterans, Qualitative research, Veterans court


176 pages

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