The State University of New York is committed to operating with integrity and in compliance with all applicable laws, regulations and policies. The State University of New York has established the Compliance initiative to coordinate SUNY’s numerous existing compliance efforts and act as a resource for the campuses on SUNY’s legal, regulatory, and ethical responsibilities.
The Compliance role is located within the SUNY Office of General Counsel and reports to the Senior Vice Chancellor for Legal Affairs and General Counsel.
Title IX and Clery Training Opportunities website:
This SUNY website offers information for campuses on all upcoming webinars and live trainings on Title IX, Clery, and Sexual Violence Prevention. The available trainings used to be communicated solely through the Clery and Title IX listservs, but they are now publishd on the SUNY website for ease of access and sign-up.
JCOPE Comprehensive Ethics Training
SUNY System Administration offers JCOPE Comprehensive Ethics Training webinar sessions for all campuses to supplement the JCOPE training that occurs locally at each institution. These sessions are held twice every other month, and are facilitated by the Office of U-Wide Human Resources, the Office of General Counsel, the Compliance Office, and the Office of Information Technology. The goal of these system-wide sessions is to help campuses ensure that their new employees who are required by statute to complete the JCOPE Comprehensive Ethics Training, receive that training in a timely fashion, and in accordance with the statute.
To sign up for one of the training sessions, send an email to the Director of Compliance. The information on these modules, and their dates and times, is being communicated to campuses via the campus Ethics Officer.
Upcoming JCOPE training dates/times:
Thursday, May 12 - 10:30 a.m.
Thursday, June 2 - 2:00 p.m.
Tuesday, June 21 - 10:30 a.m.
Child Protection Policy Training
The Office of General Counsel and the Compliance Office have teamed up to deliver a system-wide training on the SUNY Child Protection Policy. The training, separated into modules, is available on the Compliance topic page devoted to the Child Protection Policy. The training includes recorded modules, and the powerpoint used for each training section is also availale for campus use. See the 'Training' section of the page.
What’s New to the Compliance Website
The compliance website is continually adding new pages featuring information and resources for the SUNY campuses. Below is a listing of some of the recently added content.
- A Plain Language Explanation of Distinctions Between the New York State Penal Law and the College Disciplinary Processes
The 2015 NYS legislation creating Article 129-B requires that college or other officials explain differences between the college process and the criminal justice process in addressing sexual and interpersonal violence. There are significant differences between the two systems because they have different, important goals. In the criminal justice system, prosecutors pursue cases when they believe there is sufficient evidence to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that an individual has committed a criminal act. A person who is convicted of a crime will face criminal penalties, such as incarceration, probation, or the imposition of a fine. The college disciplinary process seeks to determine whether an individual has violated college policy. In this process, a preponderance of the evidence standard of proof is used to determine responsibility. A person who is found to have violated college policy may be suspended, expelled or otherwise restricted from full participation in the college community.
To assist public and private colleges across New York State in complying with this requirement, a small team of attorneys got together to develop a uniform, plain-language document that applies generally. The document is intended to help college officials who are working directly with students explain the differences between the criminal justice system and college disciplinary processes and answer questions. The document is available as a user-friendly website. The site includes the text of the cover memo we prepared, the resource table itself, and the options to download the resource (without the cover memo) as a PDF or Word document, so campuses can refine or personalize to their needs.
- Gender Identity Equality - A newly adopted New York State regulation now formally prohibits discrimination and harassment on the basis of gender identity and transgender status under the New York State Human Rights Law. The regulations (9 NYCRR §466.13) are effective as of January 20, 2016. The SUNY Compliance webpage on Gender Identity Equality discusses what we know about the new law and its impact.
- Campus Crime Reporting New York State Law
A new page on the compliance website summarizes how the 2014 Campus Crime Reporting Law impacts SUNY campuses.
- NEW SUNY Sexual Assault & Violence Resources (SAVR)
In the Fall of 2015, with the start of the school year, SUNY has released a custom “Sexual Assault & Violence Resources (SAVR)” web-based tool to support victims to support victims of sexual assault or interpersonal violence, whether the victim attends a SUNY school or lives in any one of New York State’s communities. Both tools can be customized for use by states and colleges nationally at no cost; and they can be found easily by typing “SUNY SAVR” or any combination of “SUNY Sexual Assault & Violence Resources” into the Google search engine.
- New VAWA Customizable Visa and Immigration Resource
This document, a collaborative effort of attorneys and professionals from institutions across the country, is a plain language explanation of visa and immigration options for students who are victims or survivors of sexual or interpersonal violence. The resource is available to SUNY institutions and higher education institutions throughout the country. The resource web site includes two methods for customizing the document with automatic translation into all available languages. Institutions may use the Excel form/spreadsheet or the Google Docs method. Step-by-step instructions are included on the web site.
- International Background Check Guidance 2015, sent June 23 to campuses.
This guidance from the Office of Global Affairs includes recommendations for compliance with new Department of State requirements for criminal background checks pertaining to Exchange Visitor Programs.
- Campus Compliance Roles - A new page on the compliance website details all of the required compliance roles a SUNY campus must have in order to comply with State and Federal law, and SUNY Policies. The page is a comprehensive list of the compliance roles that SUNY campuses must have, at a minimum, as well as the responsibilities of the employee who has been designated to fill that particular role.
- U.S. Department of Education Publishes Compliance Calendar - A compliance calendar published by the U.S. Department of Education, titled 'Institutional Reporting and Disclosure Requirements for Federal Student Assistance Programs,' provides higher education institutions with a comprehensive summary of reporting and disclosure requirements related to institutions’ eligibility to participate in the federal Title IV, Higher Education Act (HEA) student assistance programs. The document summarizes all reports and disclosures required for participation in Title IV programs. Each summary includes the statutory or regulatory authority, a description of what is required in each report/disclosure, the due date, the method of transmittal or distribution, and the recipient of the report/disclosure.
- SUNY Child Protection Policy - A page on the compliance website further details the requirements of the Child Protection Policy and what it means for SUNY campuses. The site includes comprehensive training modules for campuses to utilize. The Policy was sent to the campuses along with a Child Protection Policy Guidance Document to help the campuses understand aspects of the policy implementation. The guidance document continues to be updated as campuses raise questions that require further clarification.
SUNY Compliance Listservs
To join the Compliance listserv, send an e-mail to the Director of Compliance.
In addition, several other Compliance listserv's are maintained in conjunction with particular compliance topics. To join one of these listservs, e-mail the Director of Compliance, who will pass the request along to the appropriate SUNY contact.
There are SUNY internal listservs for the following compliance topics/functions:
- Clery Act Compliance
- Title IX Compliance
- Affirmative Action Officers
- Records Management Officers
- FOIL/ Records Access Officers
- Ethics Officers
- Child Protection Listserv
- Internal Controls Officer Listserv
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The information contained on the SUNY Compliance website is for general campus guidance only and is not intended, nor can be relied upon, as legal advice or the imposition on SUNY campuses of specific policies or requirements. The site is intended to be an informational-only clearinghouse for some of the laws, rules, and regulations that may impact the State University of New York’s campuses. Additionally, given the rapid, changing nature of laws, rules and regulations, there may be delays or omissions contained on this site which therefore cannot be relied upon as complete. For complete compliance information, consult your campus compliance officials or the SUNY Director of Compliance. For legal advice, consult your lawyer.