Bill S7456B-2011

Relates to sexual offenses by health care or mental health care providers; requires certain officers to report certain sex offenses to law enforcement

Relates to sexual offenses by health care or mental health care providers; requires the professional conduct officer designated to investigate a complaint of professional misconduct to report certain sex offenses to the appropriate law enforcement official or authority.

Details

Actions

  • Jun 21, 2012: SUBSTITUTED BY A10336B
  • Jun 21, 2012: ORDERED TO THIRD READING CAL.1479
  • Jun 21, 2012: COMMITTEE DISCHARGED AND COMMITTED TO RULES
  • Jun 12, 2012: PRINT NUMBER 7456B
  • Jun 12, 2012: AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO CODES
  • Jun 6, 2012: PRINT NUMBER 7456A
  • Jun 6, 2012: AMEND (T) AND RECOMMIT TO CODES
  • May 22, 2012: REFERRED TO CODES

Meetings

Votes

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S7456B

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law, in relation to the duties of the professional conduct officer, applicable state board for the profession, or the office of professional discipline to report potential criminal conduct to the appropriate law enforcement official or authority

PURPOSE: The bill establishes the obligation of the professional conduct officer designated to investigate a complaint of a licensee's professional misconduct or the office of professional discipline to notify law enforcement if it determines that there is a reasonable belief that an act that constitutes a sex offense has been committed by the licensee. This reporting obligation minors the reporting obligation of the board for professional medical conduct or the office of professional medical conduct under such circumstances.

JUSTIFICATION: The Penal Law provides that a person is deemed incapable of consent when such person is a client or patient and the actor is a health care provider or mental health care provider charged with rape in the third degree, criminal sexual act in the third degree, aggravated sexual abuse in the fourth degree or sexual abuse in the third degree, and the act of sexual conduct occurs during a treatment session, consultation, interview or examination. Mental health care provider is defined to include a licensed physician, licensed psychologist and licensed clinical social worker. Accordingly, if a mental health care provider engages in sexual intercourse with his or her patient during a session, it constitutes third degree rape.

If the mental health care provider is a psychiatrist and the authority charged with investigating complaints about physicians and psychiatrists -- the Office of Professional Misconduct (OPMC), has knowledge of such conduct, OPMC is required to report it to law enforcement. However, if the mental health care provider is a psychotherapist or social worker and the authority charged with investigating complaints about licensed psychologists or clinical social workers -- the office of Professional Discipline (GPD) , or any other professional conduct officer or state board for such profession has knowledge of such conduct, OPD is not required to report the conduct to law enforcement.

There is no rational basis to treat the identical act by licensed professionals differently merely because one set of professionals is overseen by OPMC and the other set of professionals is overseen by OPD or other state board for profession. Both a psychiatrist and a psychotherapist

occupy the same position of trust, authority and dependency vis-a-vis their patient who is likely in a vulnerable and fragile state and seeks their guidance and assistance in what is by nature an intimate setting.

A patient who seeks help from a licensed mental health care provider assumes that the provider he or she has retained has the appropriate training to render assistance. He or she also has the right to expect that the provider will do so with professional integrity and will not compromise his patient's safety and well-being. with this legislation, we will better ensure that the expectation is a reality.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section one amends section 6510 of the education law by adding a new subdivision 5-a to provide that if at any time the professional conduct officer designated to investigate a complaint of a licensee's professional misconduct or the office of professional discipline determines that there is a reasonable belief that an act committed during a treatment session, consultation, interview or examination by the licensee constitutes a sex offense, such professional conduct officer, or the office of professional discipline shall notify the appropriate law enforcement official or authority.

Section two provides the effective date.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None to the State.

EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediate.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 7456--B IN SENATE May 22, 2012 ___________
Introduced by Sen. SALAND -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Codes -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to the duties of the professional conduct officer, applicable state board for the profes- sion, or the office of professional discipline to report potential criminal conduct to the appropriate law enforcement official or authority THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 6510 of the education law is amended by adding a new subdivision 5-a to read as follows: 5-A. AT ANY TIME, IF THE PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT OFFICER OR HIS OR HER DESIGNEE DESIGNATED TO INVESTIGATE A COMPLAINT OF PROFESSIONAL MISCON- DUCT OF A LICENSED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER OR LICENSED MENTAL HEALTH CARE PROVIDER DETERMINES THAT THERE IS A REASONABLE BELIEF THAT AN ACT THAT CONSTITUTES A SEX OFFENSE IDENTIFIED IN PARAGRAPH (H) OF SUBDIVISION THREE OF SECTION 130.05 OF THE PENAL LAW HAS BEEN COMMITTED BY THE LICENSEE AGAINST A CLIENT OR PATIENT DURING A TREATMENT SESSION, CONSUL- TATION, INTERVIEW, OR EXAMINATION, THE PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT OFFICER OR THE OFFICE OF PROFESSIONAL DISCIPLINE SHALL NOTIFY THE APPROPRIATE LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIAL OR AUTHORITY. S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

Comments

Open Legislation comments facilitate discussion of New York State legislation. All comments are subject to moderation. Comments deemed off-topic, commercial, campaign-related, self-promotional; or that contain profanity or hate speech; or that link to sites outside of the nysenate.gov domain are not permitted, and will not be published. Comment moderation is generally performed Monday through Friday.

By contributing or voting you agree to the Terms of Participation and verify you are over 13.

Discuss!

blog comments powered by Disqus