A pamphlet distributed in the Cal Poly dorms that describes sexual abuse as more prevalant in the greek system has caused anger and debate between Student Affairs departments.
The pamphlets stated that “Greek men are more likely to perpetrate rape, gang rape, and acquaintance rape, than are non-greek men,” and that, “Date rape drugs are highly prevalent” during greek recruitment.
“It’s angering that just because I am in a fraternity I am put into the same category as someone who rapes women,” said Mike Motroni, president of the interfraternity council.
Cal Poly Housing and Residential Life created and distributed the pamphlets in every dorm on campus before students moved in.
“We are constantly fighting stereotypes on campus,” Motroni said. He added that he received many complaints about the pamphlet from parents and fraternity and sorority members.
“We have never seen anything like this on our grounds,” said Dan Terzian, 21, secretary of Kappa Chi.
The pamphlet cited its sources from three Web sites: www.edc.org/hec, webpages.marshall.edu/~pressman/rape.html and www.vix.com/men/rape/frat.html. The three sites contain statistics that were present in national numbers. Webpages.marhall.edu is a Marshall University personal Web site from 1998.
Motroni said that the national numbers did not relate to greek life at Cal Poly. There are no local statistics on sexual assault cases in fraternities at Cal Poly, he said.
“It would be great for Cal Poly fraternities to create their own stats and compare them to national numbers,” said Preston Allen, director of housing and student life.
The pamphlets are also outdated and said that Cal Poly has 18 fraternities and six sororities. In fact, there are 23 fraternities and 10 sororities.
“For us to stop using the pamphlet we would need a replacement,” Allen said. “We must ensure that the information is out there so that students can make informed decisions.”
The purpose of the pamphlet was to inform students, mainly freshmen, about the Greek system, Allen said. Besides sexual abuse, the pamphlet gave examples of positives in the greek system such as providing social opportunities for students and services for the community.
Cornel Morten, vice president of Student Affairs, said that the pamphlets will not be printed again. Both Cal Poly Housing and Residential Life, and the interfraternity council are departments within the Student Affairs division.
There is also debate on how long the pamphlet has been in use. Motroni said that the pamphlet circulated for three years but was discontinued due to scrutiny from the greek council. Allen said that the pamphlet has been in continued use for the past few years.
“Out of this unfortunate situation there is an opportunity for groups to sit down at the table and work at a positive outcome,” Mortoni said.
Mortoni said that he wants a group of students and faculty to come together and create a new educational program about the greek system.
“It’s done damage to this rush,” said Allen Bengtson, a Kappa Chi member.