Congress moves forward on requiring schools to report hazing

Nov 17, 2019 by

The strength of the reporting requirements remains to be seen, with Timothy Piazza’s family preferring one measure over another.

WASHINGTON — Prospective students and their families soon may be able to view reports of hazing at colleges and universities across the country, as Congress moves forward this fall on the first federal anti-hazing rules in response to student deaths at Greek life events.

It remains to be seen, however, just how stringent the reporting requirements will be and how easily families will access and compare those figures.

The measures are being folded into a sprawling higher education bill nearly three years after the hazing death of Timothy Piazza at an alcohol-soaked fraternity hazing party at Penn State University. The 19-year-old sophomore engineering student’s death in February 2017 shocked college administrators and engulfed national Greek student organizations in an existential crisis.

Mr. Piazza’s parents have since advocated for stricter state and federal laws to prevent hazing and hold student organizations and schools accountable.

In October 2018, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf signed one of the country’s strongest anti-hazing laws — named after Timothy Piazza — that created a felony-level offense of aggravated hazing, punishable by up to seven years in prison. It would also, for the first time, permit the confiscation of fraternity houses where hazing occurs.

While a handful of states have acted, Congress has been considering bipartisan measures that establish the first federal definition of hazing and require all U.S. schools to be more transparent.

Source: Congress moves forward on requiring schools to report hazing | Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

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