FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Donna Tommelleo, 860-524-7313
August 12, 2008 firstname.lastname@example.org
Governor Rell announces ‘Stand Down 2008’
for Veterans Will Be Held September 12
Governor M. Jodi Rell today announced that military veterans in Connecticut will have access to dozens of vital social outreach services during “Stand Down 2008” on Friday, September 12 at the State Veterans Home campus on West Street in Rocky Hill.
“This practical program delivers effective, accessible assistance to help needy veterans regain their independence and dignity,” Governor Rell said. “We must all work together to continue to combat veteran homelessness in America.”
Participating veterans will have access to services from more than 30 government and private agencies in one location including medical screenings, social service assistance, legal assistance with misdemeanors, job counseling and referrals, VA benefits information, driver's license renewals, haircuts and free clothing and supplies.
The Governor said last year 750 needy veterans participated in Stand Down at the Rocky Hill campus. She is encouraging veterans’ organizations, social service advocates and public health professionals around the state to reach out to veterans who could benefit from the program and help get them to the event next month.
“Letting homeless and needy veterans know about this special day of assistance and helping with their transportation is essential. You can make a difference by registering and following up with just one veteran in need,” Governor Rell said.
It is estimated that there are more than 200,000 homeless veterans in the United States, representing about 25 to 30 percent of the nation's total homeless population. The Connecticut Department of Veterans’ Affairs is the largest provider of direct services to homeless veterans in the state providing residency to a daily average of 370 veterans.
“As the economy continues to tighten, more and more veterans of all ages are struggling to maintain an acceptable quality of life. Stand Down offers a safe haven for any veteran in need to gain valuable information and assistance,” said state Veterans Affairs Commissioner Linda S. Schwartz.
Needy veterans or their advocates can pre-register and receive more information by calling 1-800-550-0000, Extension 5833 or by visiting
. However, pre-registration is
required to attend Stand Down.
Free transportation for veterans is available from pick-up locations around the state. Key urban areas to be served include Bridgeport, Hartford, Meriden, New Haven, Norwich, Stamford, Torrington, and Waterbury.
Organizations and individuals interested in contributing resources or services to Stand Down 2008 are asked to contact the Department of Veterans' Affairs at 1-800-550-0000, Extension 5826.
The Connecticut Department of Veterans’ Affairs, in conjunction with state, federal and private agencies, is the lead sponsor of Stand Down. Supporting state agencies include the Connecticut Departments of Banking, Labor, Higher Education, Mental Health and Addiction Services, Motor Vehicles, Public Health, Social Services, Transportation, Office of the Chief Public Defender, and the Judicial Branch. Participating Federal agencies include the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Social Security Administration.
“People are always asking ‘what can we do to help support our veterans?’” said Governor Rell. “Get involved in Stand Down is one important way you can help. Too many veterans are homeless and out of work across this country.”