Content warning: The following story contains references to sexual assault.
The USC Undergraduate Student Government intends to release a list of demands to the university administration in response to recently released Department of Public Safety reports of sexual assault on Greek Row and USC’s campus.
The announcement, which was crafted by USG prior to tonight’s Senate meeting, will be published tomorrow through social media and a university-wide email, according to multiple USG members.
During tonight’s meeting, Chief of Staff Max Gomez provided a preview of what’s to come in the statement.
USG demands that USC holds its students and fraternities accountable for their crimes and makes systematic reforms to the oversight of Greek Life and the Interfraternity Council.
“I think the common stance between [USG] is what [USC’s administration has] done so far is not enough,” Gomez said.
USG Vice President Lucy Warren also emphasized the need for a centralized reporting system for sexual assault crimes.
“There’s seven different avenues where a student can report, and they are very complex,” Warren said. “We want to work towards a centralized reporting form [for students].”
Finally, the USG statement will demand faculty support for students in academics and added mental health resources for students in the wake of the past week’s events.
Gomez advocated for increased funding for USC Relationship and Sexual Violence Prevention and Services, additional counseling staff to be made available to students and mandates for drug testing strips at all university social functions and approved events.
Students have expressed their frustration with the university’s handling of these cases through social media and in-person protests.
An Instagram account whose first post dates back to Jul. 27, 2020, has called for the abolition of Greek life at USC, and also features stories of sexual assault survivors. The account has contributed to campus wide conversations about Greek life reform.
“It’s not something we take a stance on as an organization,” Gomez said when asked about the Abolish Greek Life movement.
At the end of the meeting, Senator Hunter Hinson, a junior studying political science and communications, presented articles and resources about the recent history of USC Greek life.
Hinson addressed a 2018 lawsuit in which five USC fraternities claimed that the university’s policy against recruiting students in their first semester of school violated the First Amendment.
Hinson also brought up an article from 2015 about “how sex is sometimes seen as required in exchange for access to social events on campus with a Greek life.”
“There are a lot of issues within Greek life but I think at the moment the feasibility of completely abolishing it is difficult to perceive,” Hinson said. “[Parties] going underground may be more dangerous than having things regulated by the university.”
Below are USC resources to report sexual assault and address mental health.
Relationship and Sexual Violence Prevention and Service