The Third Department determined the NYS Office for People with Developmental Disabilities’s (OPWDD’s) finding that petitioner’s failure to report an incident of suspected abuse by another employee was substantiated was supported by the evidence, despite the fact that allegation of abuse by the other employee was not substantiated:
The evidence at the hearing established that the service recipient reported to petitioner every time the other employee was “rude” to him over the course of six months, and petitioner did not act on this information. By petitioner’s own testimony, she saw the other employee shout at and belittle the service recipient, yet she reported nothing. Although petitioner disputed the characterizations of her statements at the meeting or that she thought the other employee was abusive, and offered many reasons as to why she did not act on her observations, respondent was free to make credibility determinations and credit contrary testimony, as “it is the responsibility of [respondent] to weigh the evidence and choose from among competing inferences therefrom” … .
We reject petitioner’s contention that obstruction of reporting cannot be substantiated against her since the underlying allegations of abuse against the other employee were not substantiated. Pursuant to statute, reportable incidents must be reported when they are “suspected,” rather than confirmed … . Matter of Taylor v Justice Ctr. for the Protection of People with Special Needs, 2020 NY Slip Op 02299, Third Dept 4-16-20