Many of you may already know me but by way of introduction, my name is Mark G. Pugliese I. After serving 40 years in law enforcement, which included 35 years with West Hempfield Township Police Department in Lancaster County (17 of those years as Chief of Police), I retired in April of this year and began working for the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) in the Bureau of Programs, Initiatives, Reintegration and Outreach. I quickly learned that there are many benefits and services available for veterans that I wasn’t aware of and realized that law enforcement officers across the commonwealth may not be familiar with either. I also learned that the percentage of law enforcement officers in the commonwealth that are veterans or active duty service members was an unknown. Nationally, the statistics run anywhere between 8 and 50%...hardly an exact science.
With this lack of information, I wanted to do something that could assist these officers in knowing what benefits & services may be available to them, and how to obtain them, survey law enforcement agencies to determine the percentage of officers who are veterans or active duty military members and lastly, see if there was a way the DMVA may be better able to serve the law enforcement community as well as the communities that you serve.
To that end, I am asking for your help. First, I would like to introduce you to Pennsylvania’s Veterans Registry. The PA VETERANS REGISTRY is an online application that allows veterans, family members and people who work with veterans to connect with DMVA to request information related to the valuable state benefits, programs and services offered. By connecting with DMVA, registrants can also opt-in to receive ongoing communications such as the weekly DMVA DIGEST, breaking news and other updates. Please pass this information on to your officers and staff who are veterans/active duty military members so they may get registered and stay informed. To access the registry, please use the link below:
Identifying veterans/military members in the law enforcement community is difficult, so I’m asking that you or someone from your agency complete a very short survey (see link below). It will only take a few minutes, but these valuable responses will help determine the number of veterans/active duty military numbers and provide you the opportunity to make recommendations to us. Survey monkey link is:
Finally, should you want assistance in advertising an upcoming hiring/testing process or a veteran-centric event in your community, you may do so, free of charge through the DMVA DIGEST that I mentioned above. The DIGEST is sent out weekly to almost 20,000 veterans and/or family members. Merely send the information and hyperlinks, if applicable, to RA-VA-Newsletter@pa.gov.
I would like to thank you in advance for your time and if I can ever be of assistance to you, please don’t hesitate to contact me at 717.861.6577 or firstname.lastname@example.org.