Code of Conduct

An ethical approach to the care of individuals with special needs.


The Code of Conduct is a framework for certain employees to help people with special needs “live self-directed, meaningful lives in their communities, free from abuse and neglect, and protected from harm.”  

Employees who have or will have regular and direct contact with individuals receiving services or support from facilities or providers under Justice Center jurisdiction are considered Mandated Reporters and must sign that they have read and understand the Code of Conduct.

Please be advised that the Protection of People with Special Needs Act (Chapter 501 of the Laws of 2012) requires that the Code of Conduct be signed upon hiring and on an annual basis. 


Guidance documents and acknowledgement forms relating to the Code of Conduct.


    Code of Conduct & Acknowledgement Form

    As provided by law, rule, or regulation, only custodians who have or will have regular and direct contact with vulnerable persons receiving services or support from facilities or providers covered by the Justice Center Act must sign that they have read and understand the Code of Conduct.




The Justice Center provides two free, online trainings about the Code of Conduct. Live train-the-trainer courses are offered for providers throughout the year. You can find dates and information to register for upcoming training sessions on the Justice Center's training page

Additionally, there is an interactive training for mandated reports who must sign the Code of Conduct that asks the participant to apply the Code to real-life scenarios. This training is meant to enhance a mandated employee's understanding of the Code of Conduct. This is not a mandatory training, but is offered as a resource for staff and provider agencies.

Code of Conduct Awards

2022 Code of Conduct and Champion Award Winners

The Justice Center Code of Conduct and Champion Awards were held in October.  These awards honor individuals who work tirelessly to improve the lives of people  with special needs while exemplifying provisions of the Code of Conduct.  The Code of Conduct winners include:

  • Tammy Anderson, OPWDD
  • Zalil Bacchus, Ohel
  • Connie Erdmann, Creedmoor Psychiatric Center
  • Faith Howell, Opengate Inc.
  • Beverley Walker, Camelot Counseling
  • Shonda Williamson, Heritage Christian Services


The Justice Center also honored four people with agency's Champion Award which is given individuals and organizations that support the mission of the agency.  This year's winners include:

  • Geneva Genovese, Surrogate Decision-Making Committee
  • Keith Peterson, New York City Administration for Children's Services
  • Sonny Provetto, Vermont Center for Responder Wellness
  • Shannon Stockwell, Mental Hygiene Legal Services


Nominees who received Certificates of Recognition include:

  • Patti Barry, Valley Ridge Center for Intensive Treatment
  • Joseph Borayi, Central New York Developmental Disabilities Services Office
  • Sandy Brandon, Community Missions of Niagara Frontier, Inc.
  • Princess Colquhoun, Mercy Home
  • Herlens Fontaine, The Center for Developmental Disabilities
  • Patricia Maiorana, East End Disability Associates
  • Shannon Mazza, IGHL
  • Anthony Morano, Helio Health, CCBH Outpatient Clinic
  • Ken Narde, Able 2, Enhancing Potential, Inc.
  • Shana Remington, Helio Health, Hawthorn CR-SRO
  • Faith Smith, Able 2, Enhancing Potential, Inc.
  • Maryellen Stanford, Lifespire, Inc.
  • Christina Taverna, Maryhaven
  • Virginia Vath, The Resource Center
  • Valarie Winter, Developmental Disabilities Institute


watch the award ceremony
How can someone be nominated for an award?

Nominations for the 2023 Code of Conduct Awards will open in the spring.  Information will be available on the Justice Center's website.