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Senator Stabenow Statement on the Passing of Robert P. Griffin

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow today issued the following statement regarding the passing of former U.S. Senator and Michigan Supreme Court Justice, Robert P. Griffin:
‘I am saddened to learn about the loss of Robert P. Griffin and thank him for his service to our country and his service to Michigan. Bob spent his life working for the people of Michigan, including representing our state as Michigan’s 34th U.S. Senator. My thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time.’

Read more here:: Senator Stabenow Statement on the Passing of Robert P. Griffin

NASA Exercises Contract Option for White Sands Test Facility

NASA is exercising its second cost-plus-award-fee option to extend the period of performance with Jacobs Technology Inc. of Tullahoma, Tennessee, to provide test evaluation and support services at the agency’s White Sands Test Facility in Las Cruces, New Mexico.

Read more here:: NASA Exercises Contract Option for White Sands Test Facility

Cartoon: New Hillary Logo Unveiled

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Report: Problem-Solving Courts Reduce Crime, Cut Costs to Taxpayers

DETROIT, MI, April 16, 2015 – The report, Solving Problems, Saving Lives, released today by the Michigan Supreme Court says that graduates of drug, sobriety, and mental health treatment courts are substantially less likely to commit another crime. These “problem-solving” courts divert offenders into special programs that provide the treatment and supervision offenders need to stay out of trouble. Avoiding incarceration also generates substantial savings for taxpayers and participants improve their employment status.

“Problem-solving courts are doing much more than solve problems. They are saving lives and saving money,” said Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Robert P. Young, Jr. “The outcomes prove beyond a reasonable doubt that problem-solving courts work.”

“Problem-solving courts are making a difference in the lives of families statewide,” said Justice Mary Beth Kelly. “Graduate by graduate, these courts are strengthening families and building stronger communities.”

For example, the report details that two years after admission to any type of drug court, graduates were 56 percent less likely to be convicted of any new offense. Other highlights include:

• 50 percent of participants in drug courts improved their employment status.

• Participants in mental health courts were 63 percent less likely to be convicted of any new offense after two years.

• Participants in sobriety courts and adult district drug courts were 75 percent less likely to be convicted of any new offense after two years.

• 97 percent of juvenile drug court participants improved their education level.

• 98 percent of mental health court graduates improved their mental health.

During the two-year period covered in Solving Problems, Saving Lives, Michigan drug courts handled 9,154 cases while there were 1,059 participants in mental health courts. Operational veterans treatment courts doubled from eight programs in FY 2013 to 16 in FY 2014. Currently, Michigan leads the nation in the number of veterans courts with 22.

Michigan’s 164 drug, sobriety, veterans, and mental health courts and other nontraditional courts are accessible to 97 percent of the state population. The Supreme Court is committed to measuring court performance in order to improve outcomes and service to the public.

 

Reverse Boot Camp Helps Michigan Veterans ‘REBOOT’ Their Lives

Reboot

Photo caption: MVAA Director Jeff Barnes (left) congratulates U.S. Army veteran Wuraola Odunsi on her successful completion of the REBOOT Workshop held at Piquette Square for Veterans earlier this year. Sixteen veterans took part in the three-week reverse boot camp in Detroit, which concluded with a graduation ceremony.

When a veteran first enters the military, it takes 16 weeks of basic training to turn him or her into a soldier. However, leaving the U.S. Armed Forces is a different story. Becoming a civilian can take as few as 72 hours – sometimes even less – and when that happens, a veteran can feel unprepared to tackle life out of uniform.

Michigan REBOOT Workshops, created by the National Veterans Transition Services, Inc. and sponsored by the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency (MVAA), can ease that transition. REBOOT Workshops help veterans reinvent themselves and build professional, educational and financial skills during the three-week program.

“REBOOT helps veterans do so much more than transition out of the armed forces – it helps them transform their lives and puts them on a path to success,” MVAA Director Jeff Barnes said. “By providing veterans with training sessions designed especially for them, we can equip them with the skills they need to achieve their goals and be successful in their civilian lives.”

Often referred to as reverse boot camps, REBOOT Workshops provide personalized training to address personal, social and professional aspects of the transition out of uniform, including seminars on resume building, financial management and selecting a college, as well as courses to better understand VA benefits and prepare for job interviews.

Graduates are also provided with job matching assistance, career coaching and ongoing support following completion of the workshop.

Wuraola Odunsi, a veteran who recently graduated from a REBOOT Workshop held in Detroit, said the program changed her life.

“The Army offers programs for reintegration, but I still didn’t know where to start or how to start once I entered civilian life,” Odunsi said. “I had a plan, but it didn’t pan out. This program helped me learn that sometimes you can’t prepare enough, but I also learned that you don’t have to transition alone. REBOOT gave me confidence. I can think outside the box now.”

A member of the U.S. Army for more than four years, Odunsi used the REBOOT Workshop to develop new skills and change her perspective on life out of uniform.

“There are always going to be obstacles in life, but REBOOT has shown me how to tackle them,” she said. “All veterans share a common bond, and it was rewarding to share this experience with other veterans.”

So far, about two dozen Michigan veterans have participated in the REBOOT program, and two more workshops are currently scheduled in 2015.

The Michigan National Guard is hosting a REBOOT Workshop, taking place from April 27 to May 15. Classes start at 9 a.m. and conclude at 4 p.m. each day and will take place at 3411 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. in Lansing.

A REBOOT session is also scheduled for June 1-19 at the Kent County Human Services Building (121 Franklin, SE in Grand Rapids).

If you are a Michigan National Guard member beginning to transition out of the Armed Forces or know of a veteran who may benefit from the skills taught at the reverse boot camp, registration is available online at MichiganVeterans.com/MIREBOOT.

Class size is limited to 25 participants per session, and all veterans regardless of service era or discharge status are welcome.


reboot flyer

Senator Stabenow Announces Support for Lake City Area Chamber of Commerce

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, today announced support for the Lake City Area Chamber of Commerce in Missaukee County. This funding comes through the USDA’s Rural Development Community Facility Grant program, which funds critical infrastructure in rural communities across the country. The $11,250 grant will be used to help replace the roof on the Chamber of Commerce building. ‘This investment is great news for Lake City,’ said Stabenow. ‘Today’s announcement is one example of the role that rural development plays in helping rural communities support businesses and promote economic growth.’ Senator Stabenow is Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, which oversees the USDA and its Rural Development program.

Read more here:: Senator Stabenow Announces Support for Lake City Area Chamber of Commerce

Senator Stabenow Announces Support for Evart Police Department to Buy New Police Car

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, today announced support for the Evart Police Department in Osceola County. This funding comes through the USDA’s Rural Development Community Facility Grant program, which funds critical infrastructure in rural communities across the country. The $17,250 grant will be used to help the community purchase a new police vehicle. ‘Police officers have to cover many miles to protect our families, homes, and communities,’ said Stabenow. ‘This new police car for Evart will help make sure there is always someone there to quickly respond in an emergency.’ Senator Stabenow is Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, which oversees the USDA and its Rural Development program.

Read more here:: Senator Stabenow Announces Support for Evart Police Department to Buy New Police Car

Celebrate with NASA as Agency Commemorates Hubble Space Telescope’s 25th Anniversary

NASA is celebrating the Hubble Space Telescope’s 25th anniversary with a variety of events highlighting its groundbreaking achievements and scientific contributions with activities running April 20-26.

Read more here:: Celebrate with NASA as Agency Commemorates Hubble Space Telescope’s 25th Anniversary

NASA, USGS Begin Work on Landsat 9 to Continue Land Imaging Legacy

NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) have started work on Landsat 9, planned to launch in 2023, which will extend the Earth-observing program’s record of land images to half a century.

Read more here:: NASA, USGS Begin Work on Landsat 9 to Continue Land Imaging Legacy

NASA Spacecraft Achieves Unprecedented Success Studying Mercury

After extraordinary science findings and technological innovations, a NASA spacecraft launched in 2004 to study Mercury will impact the planet’s surface, most likely on April 30, after it runs out of propellant.

Read more here:: NASA Spacecraft Achieves Unprecedented Success Studying Mercury

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