HOFSTRA HELPS VETERANS

November 02, 2018 at 5:00 am

Veterans facing legal hurdles have allies on Long Island. Tonight, a look at how Hofstra University is changing the lives of our warriors in need.

Aired on November 1, 2018. 

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THIS SEGMENT IS PART OF OUR
CHASING THE DREAM INITIATIVE ON
POVERTY AND OPPORTUNITY IN
AMERICA.
HERE IS AN UPSETTING STATISTIC
FOR YOU.
DID YOU KNOW THAT VETERANS
MAKE UP 8% OF THE NATION'S
PRISON POPULATION?
BUT THAT'S JUST ONE PART OF THE
PROBLEM.
SOME OF THE BIGGEST LEGAL
CHALLENGES OUR VETERANS FACE
HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH PRISON
OR THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM
AT ALL.
FROM BAD DISCHARGES AND BENEFIT
COMPLICATIONS, OUR NATION'S VETS
FACE SOME SERIOUS OBSTACLES ON
THE HOME FRONT, BUT HELP IS
AVAILABLE.
AND ONE OF THE PLACES OUR
NATION'S VETERANS CAN FIND
NEEDED GUIDANCE IS HOFSTRA
UNIVERSITY LAW SCHOOL.
HE HELPED WITH THE.
SHE IS THE DEAN OF THE LAW
SCHOOL.
WE'RE DELIGHT TODAY WELCOME HER
TO "METROFOCUS."
GLAD TO HAVE YOU WITH US.
>> THANK YOU, JACK.
THANK YOU FOR LETTING ME TALK
ABOUT AND HAVING THIS
OPPORTUNITY TO SPEAK TO THE
RESOURCES THAT ARE AVAILABLE FOR
VETERANS ON LONG ISLAND.
>> IT'S OUR PLEASURE.
AND BEGIN, THE NOTION OF
RESOURCES BEING AVAILABLE IS SO
IMPORTANT AND THE AWARENESS IS
SO IMPORTANT.
LET'S
LET'S START THERE.
A COUPLE THINGS I WANT TO TALK
TO YOU ABOUT.
ONE IS A CLINIC THAT HOFSTRA IS
DOING, A DAY LONG CLINIC.
AND IT'S DESIGNED TO PROVIDE
THIS NOTION OF AWARENESS AND
HELP FOR VETERANS HERE FROM THE
LEGAL PERSPECTIVE.
TELL US HOW THIS CLINIC GOT
STARTED.
>> EXACTLY.
WELL, APPROXIMATELY SIX YEARS
AGO -- AND THIS IS THE 6th YEAR
WE'RE GOING TO BE HAVING THIS
ONE-DAY CLINIC -- A NUMBER OF
HOFSTRA STUDENTS GOT TOGETHER,
AND MANY OF THEM WERE VETERANS
AS WELL.
AND THEY SAW A GREAT NEED.
AND THEY WANTED TO BE ABLE TO
GIVE ADVICE TO VETERANS ABOUT
BENEFITS, HEAR OTHER PROBLEMS
THEY MIGHT BE HAVING, SEE IF
THEY COULD REFER THEM TO A
NUMBER OF OUR ALUMS WHO ARE ALSO
VETERANS, AND SEE IF WE CAN GIVE
THEM LEGAL ASSISTANCE AT A
DIFFICULT TIME IN THEIR LIFE.
>> LET'S TALK ABOUT IT.
I WANT TO GET TO ISSUES IN A
MOMENT, BUT I WANT TO TALK ABOUT
EXACTLY HOW IT WORKS.
>> ON NOVEMBER 4th OF THIS YEAR,
WE WILL BE RUNNING OUR 6th
CLINIC AT HOFSTRA.
IT WILL BE RIGHT AT THE LAW
SCHOOL.
AND OUR LAW SCHOOL, WE'RE ON THE
SOUTH PART OF THE CAMPUS RIGHT
AT HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY.
WE HAVE APPROXIMATELY 25 STUDENT
VOLUNTEERS WHO WILL MEET AND
GREET OUR VETERANS.
THEY WILL SIT DOWN WITH THEM.
THEY WILL TAKE AN INTAKE FORM
FROM THEM, AND THEY WILL MATCH
THEM WITH VOLUNTEER ATTORNEYS,
AND THEN THEY FIGURE OUT A GAME
PLAN.
HOW CAN WE HELP THIS INDIVIDUAL?
IS IT AN APPLICATION FOR
BENEFITS?
IS IT AN APPEAL OF A DENIAL OF
BENEFITS?
OR DOU THEY HAVE SOME OTHER
PROBLEM?
I CAN TELL YOU BUT ONE QUICK
STORY --
>> PLEASE.
>> A RECENT CASE FROM THE LAST
YEAR.
WE HAD A VETERAN COME TO US AT
THIS CLINIC WHO WAS DISCHARGED
BECAUSE HE WAS LOSING HIS
EYESIGHT.
AND HE WAS DISCHARGED FROM THE
SERVICE, AND HE WAS HAVING TWO
PROBLEMS.
NUMBER ONE, BELIEVE IT OR NOT,
HE WAS HAVING PROBLEMS RECEIVING
BENEFITS.
AND NUMBER TWO, HE WAS HAVING A
TOTALLY DIFFERENT TAX PROBLEM.
SO, WE SAT DOWN WITH TWO
ATTORNEYS THAT DAY.
AND, NUMBER ONE, THEY SORTED OUT
HIS BENEFITS PROBLEM FOR HIM.
AND, NUMBER TWO, THEY CAME UP
WITH A PLAN TO TAKE CARE OF
HIS -- THE TAX PROBLEM THAT HE
WAS HAVING.
SO THAT'S THE TYPE OF CASE WE
DEAL WITH ON A REGULAR BASIS AT
THESE CLINICS.
AND I'M HAPPY TO TELL YOU THAT
THE CLINICS HAVE EXPANDED NOW TO
A FULL-TIME CLINIC AT HOFSTRA.
THE ROBERT W. ENTEN MEN'S
VETERAN CLINIC.
IT IS LOCATED ACROSS THE STREET
FROM THE LAW SCHOOL.
IT REALLY ASK A PR-- IS A PRIVA
CLINIC WE RUN FOR HOFSTRA LAW.
>> WE'RE TALKING ABOUT NOVEMBER
4.
>> YES.
>> ONCE THE VETERANS MEET WITH
THE LAWYERS AND ARE PAIRED UP
WITH LAWYERS, I ASSUME THAT'S
NOT THE END OF IT.
THE LAWYERS THEN WILL FOLLOW
THROUGH, CORRECT, ON WHATEVER
THEIR ISSUES ARE AND PROVIDE THE
HELP THAT THEY NEED?
>> THAT IS CORRECT.
THE VOLUNTEER LAWYERS THAT ARE
THERE ARE DEDICATED TO PRO BONO
SERVICE AND DEDICATED TO THE
VETERANS COMMUNITY.
THEY DO ONE OF TWO THINGS.
IF IT'S IN THEIR AREA OF
EXPERTISE, WHICH WE REALLY TRY
TO MATCH THE CLIENT WITH THE
ATTORNEY IN HIS OR HER AREA OF
EXPERTISE, THEY WILL CONTINUE TO
MEET TO RESOLVE THE PROBLEM.
IF IT'S SOMETHING THAT THE
LAWYER FEELS SHOULD BE REFERRED
TO ANOTHER ATTORNEY WHO
POSSIBLY, LIKE IN THE SITUATION
WITH THE TAX PROBLEM OF THE
VETERAN WHO WAS REALLY HAVING A
HARD TIME WITH HIS VISION AS
WELL, THEN THEY WILL BRING IN
OTHER ATTORNEYS TO AID AND
ASSIST.
>> WELL, THAT HAS BEEN A
MARVELOUS PROGRAM, AND CERTAINLY
THE WORK THAT YOU'RE DOING AT
THE LAW SCHOOL, HOFSTRA
UNIVERSITY LAW SCHOOL, A WELL
DESERVED REPUTATION FOR BEING
EXCEPTIONAL LAW SCHOOL,
PRODUCING EXCEPTIONAL LAWYERS,
AND CERTAINLY EXCEPTIONAL LAW
STUDENTS.
AND I THINK WHAT YOU'RE DOING
HERE IS SO HELPFUL FOR THE
VETERAN COMMUNITY AND THE
COMMUNITY AT LARGE.
JUDGE, WANT TO THANK YOU FOR
SPENDING SOME TIME WITH US.
AGAIN, OUR THANKS TO YOUR
FACULTY AND YOUR STUDENTS AND
THOSE VOLUNTEERS FOR ALL THAT
YOU'RE DOING.
WE'LL CONTINUE TO TOUCH BASE IN
THE FUTURE AND GET CAUGHT UP ON
EVERYTHING THAT YOU'RE DOING.
OUR THANKS TO YOU.
GOOD LUCK TO ALL OF YOU.
BE WELL, AND WE'LL TALK AGAIN
SOON.
>> OUR PLEASURE AND PRIVILEGE.
THANKS, JACK.
>> A REMINDER OUT THERE TO YOU,
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON VETERANS
AT THE HOFSTRA UNIVERSITY SCHOOL
OF LAW, VISIT US AT
METROFOCUS.ORG.

Mutual of America PSEG

Funders

MetroFocus is made possible by James and Merryl Tisch, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, the Sylvia A. and Simon B. Poyta Programming Endowment to Fight Anti-Semitism, Bernard and Irene Schwartz, Rosalind P. Walter, Barbara Hope Zuckerberg, Jody and John Arnhold, the Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Janet Prindle Seidler, and Judy and Josh Weston.

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