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For Immediate Release
March 1, 2021

Statement by United University President Frederick E. Kowal on sexual harassment allegations against Gov. Cuomo

“As a union of educators and medical professionals, UUP advocates for and protects everyone in the campus communities we serve from harassment and abuse. In line with those principles, UUP supports the appointment of an independent investigation, through the Attorney General’s office, of the serious sexual harassment accusations against Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

“The allegations, made by two women who worked with the governor, are deeply disturbing and must not be dismissed or ignored. They should be taken seriously and fully examined, while respecting and protecting the accusers. We cannot ignore the voices of those brave enough to come forward and tell their stories.

“Further, given the investigations into the governor’s actions regarding the reporting of nursing home deaths due to COVID-19, UUP calls on the Legislature to revoke emergency powers granted to Gov. Cuomo at the start of the coronavirus crisis.

“The ongoing work of dealing with and responding to the pandemic, and the work of passing a progressive budget, demand the focus of our state leaders, operating in a balanced and equal system of government.

“No executive should have the powers that Gov. Cuomo now has at his disposal, especially during these chaotic times. Democracy demands responsible government."

UUP is the nation's largest higher education union, with more than 42,000 academic and professional faculty and retirees. UUP members work at 29 New York state-operated campuses, including SUNY’s public teaching hospitals and health science centers in Brooklyn, Long Island and Syracuse. It is an affiliate of NYSUT, the American Federation of Teachers, the National Education Association, and the AFL-CIO.


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