- Associated Press - Sunday, May 15, 2016

HOLYOKE, Mass. (AP) - Representatives of veterans programs from around the state will attend a ceremony to help mark the official opening of a new veterans treatment court in western Massachusetts.

The court in Holyoke is one of five in Massachusetts that focus on treatment for military veterans with trauma spectrum disorders and substance abuse issues.

A team that includes a judge, prosecutors, a probation officer, defense attorneys, law enforcement and treatment professionals makes decisions in the cases. The 18-month program includes judicial and probation supervision.

The court has been operating for about six months. Its grand opening is scheduled Friday in the War Memorial Building.

Northwestern District Attorney David Sullivan says the court will provide support services to keep veterans out of jail and get them back to leading productive and healthy lives.

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