Lawmakers ask Hochul to fully fund veterans support program


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A bipartisan group of state lawmakers are asking Gov. Kathy Hochul to commit to full funding for a program for New York’s veterans who are coping with post-traumatic stress disorder from their time in service. Sen. Sue Serino, a Republican, and Assemblymember Didi Barrett, a Democrat, said the program -- known as the Joseph P. Dwyer Veterans Peer Support Program, or Vet2Vet -- has been considered a success by veterans who have used it. It offers nonclinical support and assistance for veterans who are struggling with PTSD, traumatic brain injury or other mental health challenges. The program's namesake suffered from PTSD, which was cited as a cause in his 2008 death. Despite the positive outcomes and relatively small price tag of about $5 million, Serino said veterans’ groups and their supporters in the Legislature have had to lobby to get the money included in the state budget. She said that's because the previous governor, Andrew Cuomo, consistently left the program out of his

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