by Carole Jurenko Jones, Alpha Delta (U of Alabama), 2019-2021 NPC Chairman
September has arrived and with it brings National Hazing Prevention Week™, set for Sept. 23-27, that offers an opportunity for college campuses, schools, communities, organizations and individuals to raise awareness about the importance of eradicating hazing and promoting hazing prevention.
The National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) has denounced hazing for more than 40 years, beginning with a resolution in 1977 to encourage our member organizations to forbid hazing. In 2014, NPC adopted a formal position statement against hazing referencing Unanimous Agreement IV. Standards of Ethical Conduct and outlining that each NPC member organization has its own set of bylaws, policies and rules condemning hazing and governing the investigation and discipline involving hazing allegations.
Last September, NPC joined the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) and parents who tragically lost children as a result of hazing to form an Anti-Hazing Coalition focused on pursuing and strengthening state hazing laws and significantly expanding education and training for high school and college-aged students. This group worked many months developing model anti-hazing legislative language we hope state legislatures will use as a template as they introduce legislation focused on the priorities of anti-hazing education, transparency about hazing incidents and accountability for those who haze.
In January 2019, NPC reaffirmed support for the bipartisan Report and Educate About Campus Hazing (REACH) Act (H.R. 662), which would require colleges and universities to disclose information about hazing on campus in their annual crime reports. It would also require any college or university that accepts federal funding to provide hazing prevention education to all students. Rep. Marcia L Fudge (D-Ohio) and Rep. David P. Joyce (R-Ohio) are original co-sponsors of this important bill.
On June 13, 2019, Rep. Fudge and Rep. G.T. Thompson (R-Pa.), introduced the Educational Notification and Disclosure of Actions risking Loss of Life (END ALL) Hazing Act (H.R. 3267). This Act requires each institution of higher education that receives federal student aid to maintain and update biannually a website page that discloses student organization violations of the institution’s code of conduct that threaten the safety of students. The report would detail the corrective measures imposed by the school on the student organization allowing students and parents to make more informed decisions about which student organizations are safe to join. In addition to NPC and NIC, the following organizations also endorse the legislation: Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA), Association of Fraternity Leadership & Values (AFLV), Northeast Greek Leadership Association (NGLA), Southeastern Greek Leadership Association (SGLA) and HazingPrevention.org™.
As we work to advocate for and preserve the sorority experience, NPC continues to lead efforts to eradicate hazing and partner with government officials, parents in the Anti-Hazing Coalition, other fraternal umbrella organizations and others who share our common interests to help develop sustainable solutions to create safer campus cultures where students advocate for one another.
National Hazing Prevention Week™
National Hazing Prevention Week (NHPW) is observed the last week of September each year, and the intention is to get campuses, schools, communities and individuals to come together to end hazing. Everyone is encouraged to have discussions about hazing in their communities, raise awareness about the problem of hazing, educate others about hazing and promote the prevention of hazing. Visit the NHPW website to learn more and follow NPC on social media for posts during NHPW.