Summary of Anti-Hazing Policy
I. GENERAL OVERVIEW
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated (“Delta”) has a zero-tolerance hazing policy. The policy is embodied in numerous Delta documents that are disseminated to members, including the Constitution and ByLaws; the Code of Conduct; the Administrative Procedures Manual for Membership Intake; and the “no hazing” contract members are required to sign. The policy likewise is embodied in documents disseminated to applicants/prospective members, including the Applicants Rights and Responsibilities Statement (“no hazing contract), which all applicants are required to sign. The policy expressly prohibits all acts and forms of hazing, before, during and after the Membership Intake Process. The prohibition covers all hazing activities, whether physical, mental, or emotional, including, but not limited to, pre-initiation and/or underground activities (which is anything in addition to or contrary to approved activities); paddling; beating; slapping; blindfolding; pushing; depriving of sleep; pulling on clothes; pulling one’s hair; requiring the consumption of alcohol or drugs; forcing or requiring the consumption of foods that an applicant/prospective member finds disagreeable; yelling; humiliating; harassing; belittling; cursing; any morally degrading, illegal, or indecent action; requiring applicants/prospective members or newly initiated members to perform housework or homework for members, or to “run errands.”
Any member of Delta who participates in any form of hazing, or who is aware of hazing or allegations of hazing, and fails to report such shall be sanctioned, as summarized below and as provided in detail in Delta’s Conduct of Conduct. Any applicant/prospective member who consents to hazing, who participates in hazing by allowing herself to be hazed, or who is aware of hazing, but fails to report it shall be barred from membership in Delta.
Reports shall be made in the following order: to the chapter president; the chapter advisors; and the Regional Director and Regional Representative; and/or to the National First Vice President and the Executive Director of Delta. All hazing reports must be sufficiently detailed to enable those to whom a report is made to take action. If any member or applicant/prospective member reports hazing and does not receive a positive response, she should immediately escalate the reporting to the next level. Anyone reporting hazing always has the option of contacting the National First Vice President and/or the Executive Director directly, at any time.
II. NATIONAL POLICY IS EXCLUSIVE
Anyone interested in becoming a member of Delta is hereby notified that Delta has approved no practices that are inconsistent with the policy summarized above. The Sorority does not consent to, condone, acquiesce in, or tolerate any acts or forms of hazing, including, but not limited to, activities of the kind enumerated above. There is absolutely no requirement that anyone participating in Membership Intake or who has been initiated submit to any form of hazing. To reiterate: to become a member of Delta, no one is required to, and no one should, participate in any form of hazing. This includes participation in any “chapter traditions” or “chapter practices,” which some chapters or individual members may purport to implement in the name of Delta.Delta has not approved any such “chapter traditions” or “chapter practices,” and no chapter or individual member has authority to supplement, modify, or override Delta’s Membership Intake policy. Thus, to become a member of Delta, no one is required to, and no one should, participate in any such traditions or practices.
Delta disclaims responsibility or liability for any damages, claims, or injury that is related to or results from the conduct of any individual(s), groups, or associations purporting to perform any unapproved acts in the name of Delta.
III. PENALTIES FOR HAZING
Delta shall impose sanctions upon any members, chapters, and applicants/prospective members who are involved in any form of hazing, including being aware of and not reporting hazing or allegations of hazing to the chapter president; the chapter advisors; the Regional Director; and/or the National First Vice President; and the Executive Director of Delta. The type of sanctions to be imposed upon chapters and members depends on the nature of the violation and any history of any such prior violations.
For chapters, the range of sanctions includes any one of the following: denial of the right to conduct membership intake; suspension for a time certain; and revocation of chapter charter. With respect to individual members, the range of sanctions includes suspension and/or expulsion. Suspension automatically includes the denial of the right to participate in any Delta activities on a local, regional, or national level, including the right to wear paraphernalia, during the period of suspension. Expulsion means that Delta has revoked all rights and privileges of membership, including, but not limited to, the right to attend or participate in any “Deltas-only” functions; the right of a woman to represent herself as a member of Delta; the right to wear paraphernalia; and the right to refer to members of Delta as “sorors.” Both a chapter and an individual may be assessed a monetary fine, as appropriate.
With respect to applicants/prospective members, the sanction is denial of membership in the Sorority.
Delta posts on its website the names of chapters that have been placed in suspended status or whose charters have been revoked. Delta also posts the names of members who have been suspended or expelled and of prospective members who have been barred from membership.
Finally, given that hazing is a crime in 44 states, Delta will report acts of hazing to law enforcement officials. Delta will not defend any member who is charged with hazing.
Anyone interested in obtaining more information on Delta’s anti-hazing policy may contact Delta’s Director of Membership.