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After Allegations, USC to Require Guards at Fraternity Parties

Social gatherings can resume in March if new rules are followed
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 20, 2022 6:35 PM CST
After Allegations, USC to Require Guards at Fraternity Parties
People pose for photos in front of the Tommy Trojan statue on the USC campus in Los Angeles in 2019.   (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File)

(Newser) – Fraternity parties can resume at a major California campus in March, provided new rules are followed—including one requiring security guards to be posted on hallways leading to bedrooms. The USC rules are in response to allegations that sexual abuse and drugging took place at several houses last fall. Suspensions followed, and a Title IX investigation has begun, the Los Angeles Times reports. The group appointed to draft the rules studied best practices around the country and took recommendations from students, said the school's interim vice president of student affairs, who co-lead the group.

One conclusion is a need to be "intentional about keeping social gatherings in common spaces and public spaces," Monique Allard said. Fraternity guests are not to be allowed into bedrooms during social events. Security guards must be posted at gathering areas and entry points, as well as "at stairs or hallways leading to bedrooms," the rules state. The campus will hire a compliance coordinator, and security plans will be reviewed weekly. Six students reported being drugged at one fraternity on Sept. 24, and one woman said she was sexually assaulted. Campus protests followed, and Signa Nu was suspended.

Fraternities that have complied with the new conditions can resume hosting social gatherings on Feb. 3, per NBC. An alcohol-free rush begins online Friday, then goes to in-person recruiting Monday, the first day that classes are again held in person. One protest organizer said she'd like more steps incorporated to prevent sexual violence in time. "It’s important that they're looking into this issue, but it seems like the frats were put in time-out," said Natalia Parraz, 22. (Read more USC stories.)

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