SENATE PASSES LEGISLATION TO PROTECT CHILDREN FROM ABUSE
State Senator Hugh T. Farley (R, C, I - Schenectady) announced that he and his colleagues in the New York State Senate passed a measure on April 11th requiring camp directors to report suspected child abuse regardless of the location where abuse may have occurred. With many parents now beginning to think about summer camps, the bill (S.3777A) would protect children and facilitate the detection of abuse by camp staff.
Camp operators are currently required by the state Department of Health to report abuse or maltreatment that may occur at camp. However, the directors are not included as mandated reporters of child abuse that may be witnessed in other settings. In addition, directors that report suspected abuse could be liable for civil liability actions, such as slander or defamation. By including overnight, summer day and traveling summer day camp directors among the teachers, medical and law enforcement professions, and many others who act as mandated reporters, New York is increasing the potential for early detection of abuse and facilitating the ability of directors to come forward with important information.
The Senate also acted on legislation (S.597A) which would preclude convicted sexual offenders from becoming licensed as real estate appraisers. The measure builds upon a 2008 law which prevents sex offenders from becoming licensed real estate brokers or salesmen. It would remove a persistent threat by prohibiting convicted sex offenders from becoming state certified as a real estate appraiser and require the reporting of a conviction for a sex offense or sexually violent offense by real estate licensees.
Both bills have been sent to the Assembly.