County hopes to enhance veteran program
Wednesday, 28 November 2012 13:39

HOMEFRONT helps veterans with services

by Ben Boehl

    While Veterans Day is a day to honor all of our veterans, Baltimore County went a step further on Nov. 9 and announced enhancements to a veterans service program called HOMEFRONT- Our Turn to Serve. 
    “Veterans Day is a great time to remember that supporting our troops and veterans is more than just a slogan or a bumper sticker,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.
    “As a community, we are truly grateful for their sacrifice. Whether a veteran has just returned from Afghanistan or served decades ago in another part of the world, we want to ensure that they receive every benefit and service to which they are entitled.”     

    Kamenetz announced that Larry Simmons and Anne Marie Humphries, both Special Assistants to Kamenetz, were named as co-chairs of the Homefront Work Group, a broad coalition of Baltimore County agencies and veteran’s service organizations.
    Simmons and Hum-phries will be responsible for coordinating the partnerships with county agencies and community-based organizations providing services to veterans and their families. They will take over for Meg Ferguson.
    “I would like to express my appreciation to the outgoing chair, Meg Ferguson, for the superb job she did in assembling this group and initiating outstanding coordination and outreach efforts,” Kamenetz said.    
    “With her expanded duties as legal counsel for our Department of Social Services, she is giving up this leadership role, but will remain actively involved in what has become a real passion for her.”    
    According to a Baltimore County press release, The Homefront Work Group was created to provide a  coordination of services that are available to veterans from all levels of government and non-profit organizations.    
    That includes helping veterans find jobs, housing and quality healthcare. This is done by connecting those service providers to each other. The group has created partnerships and shares resources and ideas that provide service delivery of county and private agencies to better serve veterans.
    In January, Baltimore County announced more hiring preferences for veterans. Veterans who pass the entry level test for county police, fire, sheriff and corrections departments will receive priority in screening and hiring for potential vacancies. 
    “Each of these public safety departments will be hiring new employees in the near future,” said Kamenetz. “That will be the first time that we will be able to see the impact of this effort. I look forward to seeing the results.”  
    For more information  on Baltimore County veterans’ programs, visit www.bcpl.info/community/veterans-services or call 410-887-2008.