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Cuomo Expands List Of Mandatory Abuse Reporters

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has signed legislation (S.273A/A.5842) to include bus drivers to the list of mandated reporters of abuse in private schools.

“The safety and well-being of our children is the top priority of this administration and I’m proud to sign this legislation and help close this loophole in the law,” said Gov. Andrew Cuomo. “In New York, we will continue to do everything in our power to protect our young people and with this measure we take one more step toward a safer and stronger New York for all.”

Under current law, bus drivers employed at public schools are required to report all allegations of child abuse. This new law corrects an inequity in the law by expanding that requirement to bus drivers employed by private schools.

The legislation was passed, 134-0, by the state Assembly in March with both Assemblymen Andrew Goodell, R-Jamestown, and Joe Giglio, R-Gowanda, voting in favor. It was approved 62-0 in the state Senate.

According to the legislative justification, Chapter 363 of the Laws of 2018 provided comprehensive reform to Article 23-B relating to the reporting of child abuse in an educational setting to require all schools including school districts, public schools, nonpublic schools, Special Act School Districts, state-supported schools, state-operated schools, charter schools, BOCES and school bus drivers and their supervisors to report allegations of child abuse in an educational setting. The updated chapter amendment clarifies that provisions of the education law in relation to the reporting of child abuse in an educational setting apply to school bus drivers employed by a school and to provide that persons employed by an 853 school have complied with the reporting requirements of Article 23-B of the Education Law if they have reported the incident to the statewide central register of child abuse and maltreatment.

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