Advocacy E-News October 15, 2018
October 15, 2018
NJ GETS REPORT CARD ‘F’ FOR LACK OF PARITY IN INSURANCE COVERAGE OF MENTAL HEALTH
Advocates give New Jersey — and more than half of other states — a poor grade for failing to support and enforce federal law. The report card was released Wednesday by ParityTrack, an advocacy and leadership organization. ParityTrack seeks to evaluate how states are supporting and enforcing a 2008 federal law that prohibited health insurance companies from making it more difficult or costly for patients to access mental health or substance-use disorder (SUD) benefits than it would be for them to get coverage for physical ailments.
N.J. SCHOOLS MAY SOON SCREEN TEENS FOR DEPRESSION
If a bill going through state legislature becomes law, New Jersey schools would be required to screen all students in grades 7 through 12 for depression. The bill comes in the wake of new guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics, which recommended teens ages 12 and older be screened annually for depression. Mental illness has been on the rise nationally in the past years, with it causing more deaths in kids aged 10-14 years old than car accidents in 2013, according to the Center for Disease Control.
NEW EXPUNGEMENT LAWS GOING INTO EFFECT OCTOBER 1ST
As of October 1st, 2018, the laws surrounding the expungement of an ex-offender’s criminal record will be going through a major transformation. There are three major to help ex-offenders who have only committed what are considered to be minor crimes more easily get these convictions taken off of their record. One of the aspects that these new laws address is to reduce the amount of time it takes before ex-convicts are able to apply to get these minor offenses taken off of their record. For juveniles, the time it takes was lowered as well. Another has to do with the types of crimes that are now considered to be “minor” in the eyes of the law.
U.K. APPOINTS MINISTER FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION
Months after appointing its first minister for loneliness, Britain named a minister for suicide prevention as part of a new push to tackle mental health issues. Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday announced the appointment of the health minister Jackie Doyle-Price to the new role. She will lead government efforts to cut the number of suicides and overcome the stigma that prevents people with mental health problems from seeking help.