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"President's Message"
by Wayne J. Canastra


       On December 5, 2019, Detective Ivis Molina received an award from the Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders for her services to our veterans in Middlesex County. Det. Molina is a member of the NJNEOA Board of Directors since 2016. Det. Molina was a Sergeant in the United States Marine Corps from 2008 to 2016.

       Although other Counties have the Veterans Diversion Program, I am going to discuss Det. Molina’s involvement in Middlesex County.

       The Veterans Diversion Program was statutorily mandated by the New Jersey Legislature in December 2017. Det. Molina is solely responsible for starting the Middlesex County Veterans Programs without supervisor or money to fund the program. Det. Molina has spent countless hours networking with the military community, Rutgers University Behavioral Health, Middlesex County Authorities, and other Prosecutor’s Offices in order to start the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office Veterans Diversion Program.

Under the Veterans Diversion Program any active or former military service member who is charged with a 3rd or 4th degree crime, and is suffering from a mental condition, may be eligible for diversion to mental health and rehabilitative treatment, rather than face traditional criminal prosecution.

I am writing about the Veterans Program because we know that many returning veterans suffer from PTSD and self-medicate resulting in substance abuse disorders. If you encounter someone who would benefit from the Program and want to discuss the situation, please reach out to Det. Molina at 732-745-4214 or Ivis.Molina@co.middlesex.nj.us. Even if it is not in Middlesex County, Det. Molina can guide you.

As President of the NJNEOA, I am proud to have Det. Molina as one of my Board of Directors. Congratulations on the award, keep up the great work.

In June the NJNEOA will host the 2020 Narcotics Training Conference. The week long training conference is being held from June 8th to June 11th at Bally’s in Atlantic City. The Narcotics Awards Luncheon is on June 11th.  We will be revising the Awards Program.  The exact details will be made known in the near future.

To all our members, I hope to see you at our upcoming training seminars and conference.

I encourage anyone that wants to be involved, provide feedback or to suggest a training to contact me directly on my cell phone at 732-585-8436 or email me at president@njneoa.org.


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