June 25, 2013
Schools in Los Angeles are teaching students the finer points of ObamaCare so they can better promote the health care reform initiative to their families, a report out of the Heartland Institute states.
“’Teens are part of a “pilot” program to test whether young people can be trained as messengers to deliver outreach and limited education to family and friends in and around their homes,’ said Gayle Pollard-Terry, a LAUSD spokesman, in an email,” reported research programmer Loren Heal of the Heartland Institute. “Teens will be educating adults that they already know (e.g., family or friends) and not other adults,” Pollard-Terry’s email states.
The new initiative allots nearly $1 million worth of state grant funding to LAUSD outreach programs, including meetings with part-time and contract employees eligible to receive ObamaCare, and adult-student class presentations about the new healthcare law.
“Teens will be trained to be messengers not to those groups, but to their own families, to get more people enrolled in taxpayer-subsidized healthcare,” Heal states.
According to Heal, Covered California spokeswoman Sarah Soto-Taylor says staff see no problem with students propagandizing federal laws.
“We have confidence that the model LA Unified brought to the table will be successful in reaching our target population, which includes family members of students,” she said.
“If the project is successful,” Heal speculates, “Los Angeles families can expect more use of students to push government-preferred messaging.”
Recruiting young people to do government footwork is not only a crucial model in getting people, both young and old, acclimated to the new health care mandate – as recent promotion of the law through the National Football League seems to indicate – but could be vital to keeping insurance premiums low once the law goes into effect.
“Attracting young, healthy people will help keep premiums from rising dramatically once the law begins offering new protections for more expensive patients — namely, banning insurance companies from discriminating against people with preexisting conditions,” reported The Hill’s Sam Baker.
Marketplace enrollment starts on Oct. 1. “New insurance exchanges in each state must be open on Oct. 1 to begin enrolling people in coverage that would begin Jan. 1,” Baker writes.
Pollard-Terry says this grant, like others, will be “paid in the rear” based on how well it performs.