Suffolk Sheriff Launches 'Re-Entry Initiative' For Incarcerated Veterans

Jun 12, 2016

Army Reserve Brigadier General Richard K. Sele (left) and Suffolk County Sheriff Vincent F. DeMarco at the announcement of the Incarcerated Veterans Re-Entry Initiative at the Suffolk County Correctional Facility on Friday in Yaphank, N.Y.
Credit Christopher Cameron / WSHU

Suffolk County Sheriff Vincent DeMarco has announced a program to help incarcerated veterans re-enter society.

The Incarcerated Veterans Re-Entry Initiative will create a special housing unit for veterans within Suffolk County’s correctional facilities.

“What we’re doing now is we’re taking veterans and housing them in the same housing area. They’re still going to be held accountable for their crimes, but while they’re here, we’re going to provide services for them. So when they do get released, they get a second chance.”

The program will also provide special treatment for posttraumatic stress disorder and brain injury.

Ralph Sancheli is a Vietnam veteran and a mentor for veteran prisoners at the Suffolk County Correctional Facility in Yaphank. He believes the special housing unit will help the people he works with.

“They can support each other, they speak the same language, and if one gets down, they can pick each other up.”

Connecticut launched a similar initiative at a prison in Enfield last year.