(The Center Square) – A new year signals new laws in New York, with the implementation of changes related to education.
To improve public safety for college students, a Senate bill passed and signed will require campus crime statistics to be available and posted on college websites. In addition, the new law will require schools to investigate and report hate crimes and how educational institutions plan to implement new measures to prevent crimes on campus.
The new law also requires colleges to inform incoming students of preventive crime measures.
Democratic Gov. Kathy Hochul underscored the state’s responsibility to protect New Yorkers from hate crimes.
“Hate has absolutely no place in our state, and we will continue to do whatever it takes to make sure every New Yorker is safe from baseless violence that stems from prejudice,” Hochul said.
The Senate also passed a law to ensure all middle and high school students attending nonpublic schools have free access to menstrual products, which the legislation’s sponsor hopes will expand health equity. In addition, the new law adopts gender-neutral language to eliminate terms like “feminine hygiene products” and “sanitary napkins” and instead adopts “menstrual products and pads.”
Hochul reiterated the “need” to update how certain products are referred to in an effort to reach those who need them.
“From simply updating the way certain products are referred to, to expanding access to vital resources for those who may need them most, as time progresses, so should our laws,” Hochul said.
New York will recognize two new school holidays, marking the Lunar New Year as an official holiday.
“By designating Lunar New Year as an official school holiday, we are taking an important step in recognizing the importance of New York’s AAPI community and the rich diversity that makes New York so great,” Hochul said, referring to Asian American Pacific Islanders. “It is not just a day off from school – it is an opportunity for our children to learn about and celebrate their own or different cultures and traditions.”
New York City will designate the major Hindu celebration of Diwali as a school holiday, closing public schools on the 15th day of the eighth month in the Indian calendar.
The state will require hair stylists and cosmetologists to complete basic training on all hair types and textures as part of their license.