Giving veterans a second chance

Speaking of giving veterans of military service a second chance, some of those who have run afoul of the law in our area may be getting one.

Today, four members of the West Virginia Supreme Court will join local officials in announcing the establishment of a Military Service Members Treatment Court program for the Northern Panhandle. The event will be held at the Brooke County Courthouse in Wellsburg.

Give state Sen. Ryan Weld, R-Brooke, credit for the initiative. Earlier this year, he pushed for and got legislative approval of a bill to reinstate the program, which had been in effect for a time but had been allowed to lapse.

Two other similar programs are in effect, one in Kanawha County and the other in Wayne County. Veterans referred to them get no breaks, only specialized help overcoming problems stemming from military service and that led to criminal acts.

As Weld noted, the idea is to help rehabilitate veterans rather that merely punishing them. We think most West Virginians will agree that is a worthy goal.