National Council on Disability Announces Speakers for Foster Youth with Disabilities News Conference

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Contact: Mark S. Quigley

WASHINGTON—The National Council on Disability (NCD) will release its latest report titled, Youth with Disabilities in the Foster Care System: Barriers to Success and Proposed Policy Solutions, at a news conference at 1:00 p.m. February 26, 2008, at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 200 Independence Avenue, SW, Room 705A, Washington, DC. This free event is open to the public and the media.

The goal for our country's youth is to live healthy, happy lives and to become self-sufficient, contributing members of society as adults. However, there are subsets of youth who cannot reach these goals with ease. These youth need additional supports to assist them in their journey toward a healthy adulthood, as they are more vulnerable than the "average" youth and thus are more apt to fall through the cracks during their journey. Youth development researchers have determined that some specific youth populations are more vulnerable than others. This report examines one exceptionally challenged group in particular: older youth with disabilities (specifically, pre-teen through young adult) who are in the foster care system.

Speakers include:

Victoria Carlson, Member, National Council on Disability
Betsy Brand, Director, American Youth Policy Forum
Caroline Christodoulidis, American Youth Policy Forum, Program Associate
Christine James-Brown, President and CEO, Child Welfare League of America
Joo Yeun Chang, Director of Public Policy, Casey Family Programs
Patricia A. Morrissey, Ph.D., Commissioner, Administration on Developmental Disabilities, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Ryan Easterly, former foster youth and Program Coordinator, HSC Foundation

NCD is an independent federal agency and is composed of 15 members appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. We provide advice to the President, Congress, and executive branch agencies to promote policies, programs, practices, and procedures that—
(A) guarantee equal opportunity for all individuals with disabilities, regardless of the nature or severity of the disability; and
(B) empower individuals with disabilities to achieve economic self-sufficiency, independent living, and inclusion and integration into all aspects of society.

For more information, please contact NCD's director of external affairs, Mark S. Quigley, at or by telephone at 202-272-2004.