Faculty, Staff & Family - How Can You Prevent Hazing at KU?
As a Jayhawk community we believe in the value of Unity. We believe in taking care of each other, and to take steps when situations do not align with our values. Whether you are a faculty/staff member or parent, it is vitally important that you understand the signs of possible hazing and know how to report your concerns. Hazing can be subtle, but signs still exist.
Students that are being hazed often deny that they are being hazed and afraid to speak up. Having someone they are able to confide in- a parent, favorite instructor, an academic advisor - is very important. If you suspect hazing is happening at KU, please use the hazing report form.
Hazing comes in many forms and definitions may vary, but it is generally agreed that hazing is any action taken, or situation created intentionally that causes embarrassment, harassment or ridicule, risks emotional and/or physical harm to members of a group or team whether new or not, regardless of a person’s willingness to participate.
The legal definition may vary from state to state but trust your common sense. Here are a number of activities that may be considered hazing by your school or organization:
- Activities meant to ‘earn’ a place within an organization or team that seem inconsistent with someone’s character or values
- Activities that are embarrassing or mentally/physically abusive
- Forces or coerced abuse of alcohol
- Personal servitude or meaningless tasks
Many times students may not identify these activities as hazing. In fact, 9 out of 10 students who have experience it do not consider themselves to have been hazed. If you question the value, safety, or potential negative impact of an activity, then you have the right to express concern and ask questions.
WARNING SIGNS OF HAZING
Your student may or may not feel comfortable expressing concern directly to you if being hazed. Here are some key things to look for that might help you identify whether or not your student may be experiencing hazing:
- Sudden change in behavior or attitude after joining the organization or team
- Wanting to leave the organization or team with no real explanation
- Sudden decrease in communication with friends and family
- Physical or psychological exhaustion
- Unexplained weight loss
- Unexplained injuries or illness
- Change in sleeping or eating habits
- Withdrawal from normal activities
- Expressed feeling of sadness or feeling of worthlessness
- Increase in secrecy and unwillingness to share details
Taken from Hazing Prevention.