Chancellor Malatras and PBA President & University Police Officers Director Law Announce Free, Mandatory COVID-19 Testing Agreement of PBA-Represented Employees at SUNY Campuses

October 5, 2020

Agreement Follows Arrangements with SUNY's Largest Unions Including UUP, CSEA, and PEF to Conduct Mandatory Testing of Represented Employees

Expanded Pooled Surveillance Testing Also to Include All Non-Union Management Confidential Employees Across SUNY

Albany, NY – State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras and the Police Benevolent Association of New York State (PBANYS) President & University Police Officers Director Ryan Law today announced an agreement to conduct free, mandatory testing for PBA of New York State-represented employees at SUNY state-operated colleges, universities, and hospitals. The agreement follows similar arrangements over the past few weeks with SUNY's largest unions, including, the United University Professions (UUP) faculty and professional members, Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA) employees, and The New York State Public Employees Federation (PEF). SUNY's expanded pooled surveillance testing program will also include non-union management confidential employees, effective immediately.

"SUNY has the capacity to test 120,000 people a week due to the resources available at SUNY's Upstate Medical University, and today's agreement with PBANYS is another statement with our union leaders that the employees and professionals they represent are included in our approach to containing this virus," said Chancellor Malatras. "It's easy, we can conduct these tests regularly, and at no cost to anyone within our SUNY family—including our non-union employees—truly anyone we need on our campuses in order to keep open. My thanks to President Ryan Law for his partnership to include our University Police Officers—those we depend on to keep our campus communities safe."

PBANYS President & University Police Officers Director Law said, "As the President of the PBANYS and University Police Officers, I want to thank Chancellor Malatras for ensuring the safety of our workplace on SUNY campuses. We all share a common duty to do everything we can to fight back against this global pandemic. Our University Police are on the front lines of the response and the free pooled surveillance testing is a valuable tool to keep our members and their families safe. We are New York Tough."

Effective immediately and continuing through December 31, 2020, all state operated colleges, universities, and hospitals shall conduct testing of PBANYS Agency Police Services Unit (APSU) employees (University Police Officer, University Police Officer II, University Police Investigator, and University Police Investigator II) who are required to report in person to campus to conduct some or all of their work obligation. Testing of all employees shall be conducted in concert with regular surveillance testing in campus plans required under Chancellor Malatras' September 3, 2020, directive.

SUNY currently has the capacity to process 120,000 test samples per week thanks to major testing breakthroughs at SUNY Upstate Medical University. Their FDA-approved individual saliva test, done in tandem with aggressive pooled surveillance testing, allows colleges to quickly and accurately pinpoint and contain the virus and prevent outbreaks.

SUNY campuses have administered more than 140,115 tests on campus since the fall semester began, with a positivity rate of 0.70 percent. Over the last seven days, SUNY campuses have conducted nearly 29,983 tests, with a positivity rate of 0.56 percent.

About The Police Benevolent Association of New York State (PBANYS)

Established in 2011, the Police Benevolent Association of New York State (PBA of New York State), is a law enforcement labor union representing the interests of approximately 1,200 members of the New York State Agency Police Services Unit (APSU). The PBA of New York State is the exclusive bargaining agent for the New York State University (SUNY) Police, the New York State Environmental Conservation Police, the New York State Park Police, and the New York State Forest Rangers. Our members police and protect New York State's public universities and colleges; state parks and historic sites; and they enforce state laws and protect our lands and forests and ensure environmental safety and quality throughout the state.

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. As of Fall 2019, more than 415,500 students were enrolled in a degree-granting program at a SUNY campus. In total, SUNY serves about 1.3 million students in credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide exceeded $1.7 billion in fiscal year 2019, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit suny.edu.


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