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Justice Center

What is the Justice Center?

The Justice Center was created in legislation known as the “Protection of People With Special Needs Act” to establish standards and practices for protecting vulnerable persons. It serves both as a law enforcement agency and as an advocate for people with special needs. People with special needs shall be protected from abuse, neglect and mistreatment. The Justice Center Jurisdiction covers certain program overseen by agencies such as OMH, Office of Addiction Services and Supports (OASAS) and OPWDD.

 Who is required by law to report abuse, neglect and significant incidents to the Justice Center?

(1) Human Service Professional:  physicians, registered physician assistants, surgeons, registered nurses, licensed practical nurses or nurse practitioners, social workers, emergency medical technicians, licensed therapists, hospital personnel, school officials, alcohol and substance abuse credentialed personnel.

(2) Custodians: employees, volunteers, directors and operators of covered facilities.

 What types of incidents should be reported to the Justice Center?

 Allegation of Abuse and Neglect: Abuse and neglect involve an act (or failure to act) by an employee.

 Types of abuse and neglect to be reported include:

  • Physical Abuse- intentional physical contact such as: hitting, kicking, shoving, corporal punishment or an injury which cannot be explained and is suspicious due to extent or location.
  • Sexual Abuse- any sexual contact involving a custodian (employee) and a patient.
  • Psychological or Emotional Abuse- taunting, name calling, using threatening words and/or gestures causing emotional distress to patient.
  • Deliberate Inappropriate Use of Restraint- restraint that is done for the purpose of punishment or convenience, or done with deliberate cruelty.
  • Neglect-failure to provide supervision, or adequate food, clothing, shelter, health care or access to an educational entitlement.

Types of significant incidents to be reported include:

  • Sexual Contact Between Children: vaginal, anal, or oral penetration by patients under age 18 that occurs in a setting where the patient receives around-the-clock care or on the premises.
  • Suicide Attempt: An act committed by a patient of a mental health provider in an effort to cause his or her own death.
  • Wrongful Conduct: Actions or inactions on the part of the custodian that are contrary to sound judgment or training.

    How and when to report an incident to the Justice Center?

    To report of an incident of abuse and/or neglect call the Justice Center immediately at 1.855.373.2122. “Immediate” means immediately after potential victim(s) safety is assured. Reports of deaths should be reported within 24 hours of discovery. The death reporting line is 1.855.373.2124.

    What information should a mandated reported be prepared to report to the Justice Center?

  • Details regarding the victim(s), suspect(s) and witnesses(s).
  • Details of the incident, including the date and time, location, etc.
  • Name and address of the agency, facility and/or program.


**Have a pen and paper handy to write down the confirmation number, beginning with 101, at the end of the call**