LSU Greek Life Implementation Committee releases full report

LSU Greek Life Implementation Committee releases full report

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The LSU Greek Life Implementation Committee has released its report that includes all 28 recommendations from the Task Force on Greek Life and some additional items LSU President F. King Alexander wanted.

Alexander released the following statement:

The Greek Life Implementation Committee Report represents months of work to review and improve all aspects of our Greek community. This is not the end of the process, but the beginning of a 'new' normal for our campus. As we've stated previously, the policies and procedures outlined by our implementation committee are not stand-alone solutions but should be taken as an interlocking and comprehensive approach that is stronger than any single policy, restriction or action. Unfortunately, many universities across the country are facing similar issues, and we hope that the changes and initiatives we implement can be used as a guide for others as well. We commend the work of the committee, student leaders, faculty and staff, our Greek alumni and anyone else who participated or provided feedback during this process. We are all committed to change, and this is a major step forward for the culture shift we need surrounding Greek Life and other student organizations at LSU.

RELATED: LSU student dies during alleged hazing incident

The school's Task Force on Greek Life says the new recommendations are aimed at keeping students safe.

Alexander made a request in February that the committee put together recommendations for revising and updating existing policies and procedures after the death of Maxwell Gruver, 18, of Roswell, Georgia.

Gruver died after an alleged hazing incident at the Phi Delta Theta fraternity on September 13, 2017. LSU student government president, Stewart Lockett, says the goal is to ensure nothing like that happens again. "It's a security thing," said Lockett. "I think it's a safety thing and I think it's something that is needed."

It's a hefty list with some major changes, including restricting tailgating to Greek houses instead of the fairgrounds, banning all hard liquor greater than 15 percent alcohol by volume, and requiring all Greek organizations create a written new membership intake plan.

William Jewell is the vice president of his fraternity. He believes there are a lot of changes, but that they are necessary and will ultimately be something that will benefit everyone. "Honestly, it's been about a good mix of positive and negative reaction to it," said Jewell. "Anytime you have such a long history and such a large institution, making structural changes is a large undertaking, but it's definitely a start and a start was needed."

Perhaps one of the most landmark changes in the document is the formation of an amnesty program. It allows for students to come forward to report issues without fear of punishment. It's an update to a university policy WAFB's Scottie Hunter highlighted in a special report on hazing back in February.

"I just think that's something that LSU overlooked a little bit and we have to make sure that each student feels safe in order to report things like that," said Lockett.

The massive 32-page document is full of new guidelines from the task force and even some recommendations from the university president, but the challenge will now be putting the new policy into practice.

"We're kind of in that position where we need to know what's going on and we also need to know how we can help our other students," said Kyre Jackson, student government chief of staff.

While it may come with a few speed bumps, student leaders hope this new path will ultimately be welcomed as progress.

"It's something that we have to take and run with," Lockett added.

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