November 11, 2019

Statement of ABA President Judy Perry Martinez Re: Veterans Day

WASHINGTON, Nov. 11, 2019 – The American Bar Association joins the nation on this Veterans Day to honor the patriotism, sacrifice and contributions of those who have served their country and defended the rule of law in the United States and across the globe.

The ABA’s commitment to these brave men and women goes beyond a one-day celebration. Throughout the year, the ABA’s Standing Committee on Legal Assistance for Military Personnel works with government and military services and other bar associations to provide free or affordable legal services to veterans.

The ABA has worked with state and local bar associations and state courts to establish more than 400 veterans’ courts to give former service members with drug or mental health challenges a path toward recovery outside of the penal system. The ABA Military Pro Bono Project (www.militaryprobono.org) accepts case referrals for civilian pro bono lawyers from military lawyers on behalf of junior-enlisted, active-duty military personnel and their families. A related initiative, Operation Stand-By, enables military lawyers to seek case advice from volunteer civilian lawyers.

And the ABA Commission on Homelessness and Poverty (www.ambar.org/homeless) conducts programs and advocacy on behalf of homeless veterans, who comprise a significant segment of the homeless population.

The ABA has also advocated for the Homeless Veterans Prevention Act, which is being debated in the Senate and would remove some of the barriers blocking homeless veterans from receiving the promised benefits, services, and treatment they need for self-sufficiency and success.

Our country owes a debt to the people who have stepped up and defended our democracy. On this Veterans Day and beyond, let us all continue to explore ways we can work to repay them for their service.

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