CUMBERLAND – Operation Stand Down Rhode Island served 404 homeless and at-risk veterans at its annual outreach event held Sept. 20-22, the largest number in its 20 year history.
Homeless veterans and those at risk of homelessness from across Rhode Island converged at Diamond Hill State Park where they were provided dozens of essential services to help get them back on their feet and into stable housing and employment.
Veterans in attendance at Operation Stand Down Weekend had access to the organization’s housing services, medical services provided by the Providence VA Medical Center and the Rhode Island Disaster Medical Assistance Team, dentistry provided by Thundermist, job placement services coordinated with the organization’s Employment Education and Training Program along with the R.I. Department of Labor and Training, and access to the Rhode Island Department of Motor Vehicles to restore driving privileges, issue licenses and ID's with the new veteran designations and the like.
In addition the Rhode Island Judiciary in conjunction with the Rhode Island Department of Attorney General were available with a full courtroom set up to help veterans with traffic infractions and misdemeanor offenses. With the assistance of the Roger Williams University School of Law Legal Clinic, the Rhode Island Office of the Public Defender, Rhode Island Legal Services and volunteer attorneys, veterans were able to have their records expunged, deal with issues involving court costs, address suspended licenses and handle misdemeanor violations.
"While the weekend may be over, the work of Operation Stand Down Rhode Island to provide essential services to veterans will continue throughout the year," said Tony DeQuattro, president and founder of organization.
The agency provides housing, employment training and placement services and case management throughout the year at Johnston and West Warwick locations.
Veterans in need may reach Operation Stand Down Rhode Island at 1-800-861-8387 or online at www.osdri.org.