As committed in its October 2021 Transparency Plan, at the request of Governor Kathy Hochul and championed by Inspector General Lang, the office has launched efforts that balance the confidentiality inherent in the offices’ investigations with enhanced government transparency through the online publication of advisory letters, launch of social media accounts, and increased outreach to agencies and authorities.
“I am honored to serve as New York State’s 11th Inspector General and I am dedicated to increasing integrity, honesty, transparency, and accountability in state government,” said Inspector General Lang, “starting with unprecedented measures to shine a light on the work of the office and the institutions that serve New Yorkers.”
Advisory Letters to Agencies Now Online – 2020-Present
In addition to public reports and press releases, the Office of the Inspector General regularly issues advisory letters to state agencies and authorities outlining relevant findings and recommendations of matters that are referred to the office. Inspector General Lang announced that going forward, these letters and any responses received will be proactively made public.
Moreover, an initial set of previously issued advisory letters – comprised of 59 documents – is now available online on the “Public Information” page of www.ig.ny.gov (note the filter for “Letters” on the left-hand column), some of which are redacted due to privacy concerns, as mandated by New York’s Freedom of Information Law (FOIL). The Inspector General’s Office will continue to publish additional historical advisory letters on a rolling basis.
Launch of Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn Accounts
Inspector General Lang also announced the launch of @NewYorkStateIG Twitter and Instagram accounts as well as a new LinkedIn page. These tools will both educate the public on the actions of the office and provide another channel through which complaints may be submitted.
Renewed Outreach to Agencies and Authorities
Per Executive Law Article 4-A, executive agency employees have a legal responsibility to report fraud, corruption, criminal activity, and abuse to the Inspector General. To enhance understanding and compliance with this obligation, Inspector General Lang is offering to all relevant state agencies and authorities increased training upon request.
The Offices of the Inspector General will continue to implement measures from its Transparency Plan and will continue to seek ways to innovate and improve accountability to the people of the State of New York.
About Inspector General Lang
Inspector General Lang is a lifelong New Yorker, an attorney, and an educator. She previously served as Director of the Institute for Innovation in Prosecution, a national non-profit, and as an Assistant District Attorney in Manhattan, where she investigated and prosecuted violent crimes, including domestic violence and homicides, and served as Special Counsel for Policy and Projects.
Inspector General Lang is a graduate of Swarthmore College and Columbia Law School, where she was the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Gender and Law and has served as a Lecturer-in-Law since 2013. She was named a Rising Star by the New York Law Journal in 2015, was selected as a Presidential Leadership Scholar in 2017, was a 2019 Aspen Society Fellow, and in 2020 received the Elizabeth Hurlock Beckman Award from the American Psychological Association for her work as an educator who inspired her students to make a difference in their communities.
She was appointed to and served on the New York State Bar Association Task Forces on Racial Injustice and Police Reform in 2020, and on Racism, Social Equity, and the Law in 2021. Inspector General Lang is currently Vice Chair of the American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section, a Member of the Council on Criminal Justice, and a Term Member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She has published articles in The New York Times, The Atlantic, the New York Daily News, and many others, and is the author of March On!, a children's book about the 1915 women's march for suffrage.