August 13, 2018 - Senator Ken LaValle reports that his anti-hazing legislation is now law. The measure (S2755) that is designed to combat college hazing in relation to prohibiting physical contact or activity in any organization's initiating ceremony.
Senator Ken LaValle said, “I am pleased that the measure is being signed into law before the start of the next college semester. Too many families have had to grieve the loss of a relative due to hazing. Whether it be from dangerous hazing incidents, alcohol poisoning or drug overdoses, we need to continue to combat the problems causing tragic deaths and injuries on campuses. This new law will bring the changes necessary to deter such harmful behavior in the future.”
Although New York State currently has several laws in place to prohibit hazing, these incidents have not decreased. During the initiation or affiliation ceremonies of fraternities, students continue to be placed in situations in which their own safety is jeopardized.
This law will help prevent the deaths or serious injuries of students by prohibiting all physical conduct and physical activities required from the fraternities during the pledging ceremonies. Those who engage in the reckless activities of hazing would be guilty of hazing the first degree, which is a stiffer penalty.
Senator LaValle added, “Hazing incidents occurring on and off New York State campuses are intolerable and preventable. This law it will provide the necessary measures to deter harmful behavior and help ensure that all of the students attending New York State institutions are protected from the substantial risks caused by hazing.”
In spite of good faith efforts on the part of institutions of higher education to implement policies and procedures to combat these issues, the problems continue and show no signs of decreasing. As a result, parents, administrators and trustees have become increasingly concerned about the safety of their children and students on campus.