November | December 2013

News From the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and                   Delinquency Prevention
Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention logo.

At the meeting of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention on November 13, 2013, Associate Attorney General Tony West announced the creation of a new council subcommittee charged with developing strategies for implementing the recommendations of the Attorney General’s Task Force on Children Exposed to Violence. Composed of representatives from a range of federal agencies that serve youth, the committee will consider ways to align federal programs aimed at reducing violence and will support the identification and treatment of children exposed to violence through cross-agency grant funds.

Associate Attorney General Tony West (left), chair of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; and OJJDP Administrator Robert L. Listenbee, the council’s vice-chair, listen to presentations by a panel of experts on the implications of the Affordable Care Act for vulnerable youth.

The council meeting featured presentations by a panel of experts on the Affordable Care Act and its implications for vulnerable adolescents and young adults. The panel included Wilma Robinson, Deputy Director, Office of Adolescent Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS); Abigail English, Director, Center for Adolescent Health and the Law; Barbara Edwards, Director, Disabled and Elderly Health Programs Group, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, HHS; and Diane Justice, Senior Program Director, National Academy for State Health Policy.

The panel cited the following examples of the Affordable Care Act’s benefits for young people:

  • The law requires coverage of many preventive services for adolescents, including immunizations, with no copay.
  • Coverage for mental health and substance use is guaranteed.
  • The law also requires all states to cover children up to age 19 whose family income is below 133 percent of the Federal Poverty Level through the Medicaid program.
  • Young adults can stay on their parents’ health insurance plan until age 26.
  • Children who were in foster care are generally eligible for Medicaid until age 26.
  • Children younger than age 19 cannot be denied coverage because of a preexisting condition.
  • Starting in January 2014, annual and lifetime limits on essential health benefits are prohibited.

“For at-risk young people—and particularly those affected by violence—the services provided by the Affordable Care Act represent more than an insurance policy; they are a lifeline,” Associate Attorney General West said. “They are the tools of prevention and reorientation that can mean the difference between a life of fulfillment and one that perpetuates a cycle of trauma and violence.”

An HHS issue brief “The Affordable Care Act and Adolescents,” as well as a range of other reports analyzing the impact of the Affordable Care Act, are available online.

Meetings of the council are open to the public. Visit the Web site to register for the next meeting, learn more about the council, and read minutes from past meetings.

The Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is an independent body within the executive branch of the federal government operated under the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The council's primary functions are to coordinate federal juvenile delinquency prevention programs, federal programs and activities that detain or care for unaccompanied juveniles, and federal programs relating to missing and exploited children. The council is made up of 22 members—13 ex officio and affiliate members and 9 practitioners. The ex officio members are: the Attorney General; the Administrator of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of Education, Health and Human Services (HHS), Housing and Urban Development, and Labor; the Assistant Secretary of Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security; the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy; and the Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation for National and Community Service. Affiliate members are the Secretaries of the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Defense, and the Interior, and the Administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration of HHS. The nine juvenile justice practitioner members are appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Senate Majority Leader, and the President of the United States.