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Hate Crimes and the Law

It is a SUNY Canton University Police commitment to protect all members of the Canton community by preventing and prosecuting bias or hate crimes that occur within the campus’ jurisdiction.

Hate crimes, also called bias crimes or bias-related crimes, are criminal activity motivated by the perpetrator’s bias or attitude against an individual victim or group based on perceived or actual personal characteristics, such as their race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or disability. Hate/bias crimes have received renewed attention in recent years, particularly since the passage of the Federal Hate/Bias Crime Reporting Act of 1990 and the New York State Hate Crimes Act of 2000 (Penal Law Article 485). Copies of the New York law are available from the University Police Department.

Penalties for bias-related crimes are very serious and range from fines to imprisonment for lengthy periods depending on the nature of the underlying criminal offense, the use of violence, or previous convictions of the offender. Perpetrators who are students will also be subject to campus disciplinary procedures where sanctions including dismissal are possible.

In addition to preventing and prosecuting hate/bias crimes, SUNY Canton University Police also assist in addressing bias-related activities that do not rise to the level of a crime. These activities, referred to as bias incidents and defined by the College as acts of bigotry, harassment, or intimidation directed at a member or group within the Canton community based on national origin, ethnicity, race, age, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, color, creed, or marital status, may be addressed through the State University’s discrimination complaint procedure or the Code of Student Conduct. Bias incidents can be reported to University Police as well as to any college official.

If you are a victim of or witness to a bias crime on campus, report it to University Police by calling (315) 386-7777, use an Emergency Blue Light, or stop at the University Police Office. University Police will investigate and follow the appropriate adjudication procedures.

Victims of bias crimes or incidents can avail themselves of counseling and support services from the campus by contacting the Counseling Center at (315) 386-7314 or Office of Diversity & Inclusion at (315) 386-7962.

For general information on the State University of New York at Canton security procedures, see our website, handbook, Jeanne Clery Disclosure Act, or call University Police at (315) 386-7777.

More information about bias-related and bias crimes, including up-to-date statistics on bias crimes, is available from University Police at (315) 386-7777.