Simmons College prohibits hazing, as defined by the Massachusetts General Laws as “any conduct or method of initiation into any student organization, whether on public or private property, which willfully or recklessly endangers the physical or mental health of any student or other person.” In addition to violating the law, hazing violates Simmons values and community standards – and will not be tolerated.
As required by law, Simmons College must issue a copy of MGL c. 269, ss. 17,18, & 19 to all recognized, registered student organizations, both funded and non-funded. Furthermore, your acknowledgement of these regulations also includes the responsibility for notifying all members and potential members of your organization of the law. You may do this by reading the law at a general meeting of your organization or distributing a copy of the law to your members, either electronically or by hard copy. Additional copies of the law are available in the Office of Student Affairs.
The College will also take action against any individual(s) or organization(s) where sufficient evidence is found of hazing. Each registered organization must complete this form and submit it to the Office of Student Leadership and Activities (OSLA) annually.
I___________________ of _________________
(Print Name and Title) (Organization Name)
have read, understood and agree to comply with the provisions of the Simmons College Anti-Hazing Policy. I will assume responsibility for notifying all members of the above named organization. In addition I understand that the act of registration implies that a student organization obligates itself to abide by all rules and regulations of Simmons College pertaining to student organizations.
Signature: ______________________________________ Date: ___________________
Note: Organizations failing to register each semester may lose all or some of the privileges of registration, including the right to schedule College facilities and use of the organization's budget, if funded. Registration does not necessarily imply or indicate Simmons College sponsorship or approval of the activities of the organization.
Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 269, Sections 17, 18, & 19, states as follows:
Section 17. Whoever is a principal organizer or participant in the crime of hazing as defined herein shall be punished by a fine of not more than $3,000 or by imprisonment in a house of correction for not more than one year, or both by such fine and imprisonment.
The term "hazing" as used in this section and in sections 18 and 19, shall mean any conduct or method of initiation into any student organization, whether on public or private property, which willfully or recklessly endangers the physical or mental health of any student or other person. Such conduct shall include whipping, beating, branding, forced calisthenics, exposure to the weather, forced consumption of any food, liquor, beverage, drug, or other substance, or any other brutal treatment or forced physical activity that is likely to adversely affect the physical health or safety of any such student or other person, or which subjects such student or other person to extreme mental stress, including extended deprivation of sleep or rest or extended isolation."
Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section to the contrary, consent shall not be available as a defense to any prosecution under this action.
Section 18. Whoever knows that another person is the victim of hazing as defined in section 17 and is at the scene of such crime shall, to the extent that such person can do so without danger or peril to herself or others, report such crime to an appropriate law enforcement official as soon as reasonably practicable. Whoever fails to report such crime shall be punished by a fine of not more than $1,000.
Section 19. Each institution of secondary education and each public and private institution of post secondary education shall issue to every student group, student team or student organization which is part of such institution or is recognized by the institution or permitted by the institution to use its name or facilities or is known by the institution to exist as an unaffiliated student group, student team or student organization, a copy of this section and sections 17 and 18; provided, however, that an institution's compliance with this section's requirements that an institution issue copies of this section and sections 17 and 18 to unaffiliated student groups, teams or organizations shall not constitute evidence of the institution's recognition or endorsement of said unaffiliated student groups, teams or organizations.
Each such group, team or organization shall distribute a copy of this section and sections seventeen and eighteen to each of its members, plebes, pledges or applicants for membership. It shall be the duty of each such group, team or organization, acting through its designated officer, to deliver annually, to the institution an attested acknowledgement stating that such group, team or organization has received a copy of this section and said sections seventeen and eighteen, that each of its members, plebes, pledges, or applicants has received a copy of sections seventeen and eighteen, and that such group, team or organization understands and agrees to comply with the provisions of this section and sections seventeen and eighteen.
Each institution of secondary education and each public or private institution of post secondary education shall, at least annually, before or at the start of enrollment, deliver to each person who enrolls as a full time student in such institution a copy of this section and sections seventeen and eighteen.
Each institution of secondary education and each public or private institution of post secondary education shall file, at least annually, a report with the board of higher education and in the case of secondary institutions, the board of education, certifying that such institution has complied with its responsibility to inform student groups, teams or organizations and to notify each full time student enrolled by it of the provisions of this section and sections seventeen and eighteen and also certifying that said institution has adopted a disciplinary policy with regard to the organizers and participants of hazing, and that such policy has been set forth with appropriate emphasis in the student handbook or similar means of communicating the institution's policies to its students. The board of higher education and, in the case of secondary institutions, the board of education shall promulgate regulations governing the content and frequency of such reports, and shall forthwith report to the attorney general any such institution which fails to make such report.