Penn State scandal inspires state legislation to bring child abusers to justice

George D. Maziarz

November 17, 2011

Senator George Maziarz (R-C, Newfane) today announced that he is introducing legislation in the New York State Senate to close a loophole in the state’s child abuse reporting requirements.  The bill would add new individuals to the list of mandatory reporters of child abuse in New York: college coaches, athletic directors, professors, graduate assistants, administrators, and college presidents.

Senator Maziarz said, “Sadly, the scandal at Penn State has put sexual abuse back in the national spotlight.  Every loophole needs to be closed to protect children and bring the perpetrators of abuse to justice.  By designating college coaches and certain faculty members as mandatory reporters of abuse in New York, we are creating another line of defense against attempts to ignore or cover up these horrible crimes.”

In the Penn State case, several school officials were made aware of inappropriate sexual conduct involving young boys alleged to have been committed by Jerry Sandusky, former Penn State football defensive coordinator.  The conduct was not properly reported to law enforcement authorities by university officials.

The legislation, known as the College Coaches and Professionals Reporting Act, is quickly gaining bipartisan support in the Legislature.

“I think there will be broad support for this measure in the Legislature,” Senator Maziarz added.  “This is about protecting our children and making sure that abuse is reported, investigated, and stopped.”