Gov. Kemp signs bill to fund mental health services for military veterans
Georgia’s Department of Veterans Service is set to offer grants to nonprofit organizations, following the enactment of a new law by Republican Governor Brian Kemp, that will provide mental health and addiction services to military service members, veterans, and their families. The state has announced a remarkable $750,000 grant program that will offer mental health and addiction services to these groups.
The new initiative is aimed at addressing the challenges that many military personnel face in accessing mental health services, which include stigma, lack of resources, and other obstacles.
The program, which is modeled on a clinic in Hinesville, near Fort Stewart, that opened last year, will prioritize locations within 50 miles of a military base, providing evidence-based practices, and connecting clients to other mental health services upon discharge. To secure a grant, applicants must demonstrate that they have trained staff members to understand the military and its unique needs.
Governor Kemp, speaking at a ceremony in Atlanta, emphasized the significance of the program, stating that “many of those who have sacrificed so much for freedoms have struggled with mental health challenges in silence.” The Cohen Family Clinic, which is run by Aspire Health Partners, a Florida-based non-profit organization, will serve as the model for the program.
In addition to the new grant program, Governor Kemp also signed Senate Bill 21, which aims to overhaul the board of the Georgia Veterans Service Foundation, and House Bill 175, which exempts disabled veterans from vehicle taxation, even if they don’t use the current disabled veteran plate. The program and related legislation aim to provide greater access to mental health services for military members, veterans, and their families, as well as ensure that they receive the support and benefits they deserve.