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Do You Need Help?

If you want to help stop hazing, find out about the steps to take and the resources that are available.
Know what to do

If You Are Being Hazed:

  • Stay connected with friends and family outside of the group. Groups that haze often try to isolate their new members from others who might challenge the new members to question what they are going through.
  • Talk with others about what you are going through. You do not have to keep it a secret. Demanding secrecy is a common practice designed to protect people who are abusing others. You have a right to tell anyone anything you want about what you are going through, even if you were made to promise that you would not do so.
  • Seek guidance from your parents/guardians or other family members.
  • Refuse to participate.
  • Join together with other new members to refuse to be hazed. There is power in numbers because groups depend on getting new members to join. For example, some fraternity members admit that they became very worried when it appeared that a group of new members might rebel because of the consequences to the group if the new members left. Hazers don't want new members to realize how much power they have, so they work hard to keep them subjugated.
  • Leave the group. This is hard to do, but is always an option. Walking away from hazing takes strength. Don't believe it if anyone tries to tell you that it is a sign of weakness or that you weren't tough enough to hack it. Quitting when you are being hazed takes character.
  • Seek other support services as needed, including: Conant House (Counseling Center) and the administrative deans.
  • Report the hazing: fill out an online form or make a phone call, anonymously if you prefer.

If a Friend Is Being Hazed:

  • Tell the person that you are concerned.
  • Ask your friend what he or she has had to do as part of joining the group.
  • If you suspect that your friend is being hazed but he or she won't say so, ask if there are things going on that he or she isn't supposed to talk about. If that is the case, it's very likely that the person is being hazed.
  • Let your friend know that it's okay to withdraw from an organization at any point.
  • Offer your support.
  • Let your friend know what resources are available.

If Your Organization Hazes:

  • Raise your concern with other members that you trust.
  • If the group has relationships with alumni members, seek their constructive support.
  • Offer ideas for alternatives to hazing.
  • Give examples of groups that have developed strong, non-hazing new member programs.

Take Action

REPORT AN INCIDENT

Two People Who Go Through the Same Experience Might Feel Quite Differently

Some people feel a sense of accomplishment about going through hazing, some feel mildly annoyed, and others have strong negative reactions. Reactions can depend on the extent of the hazing, individual characteristics, and past experiences. For people who have been abused in the past, hazing can be re-traumatizing. This is why both existing and new members should not rely solely on their own experiences or the experience of others to justify any situation involving hazing. If you don’t like your situation, Colgate has resources to assist you.

Anger, confusion, betrayal, fear, resentment, embarrassment, humiliation, hopelessness, helplessness, anxiety, and depression are all normal reactions to being hazed. Some individuals have become suicidal. 

It's common to believe that things won't get worse, though they often do. You may want the hazing to stop, but don't want to get the group in trouble. You may want to leave, but fear the consequences or feel like you've invested too much already to walk away. Self-blame can occur and is fueled by hazers who tell new members that they will let others down if they leave or tell anyone what is going on.

If you are hazed, one of the most important things you can do is to resist participating in the "tradition" of hazing the next generation of members.

You Can Help Stop Hazing

Colgate has confidential resources for outreach in the Counseling Center (315-228-7385), Chaplain’s Office (315-228-7682), and Student Health Services (315-228-7750). If you become aware of hazing, you can make a report to university officials.

REPORT AN INCIDENT

If you choose, you may elect to report anonymously. Please note that although Colgate endeavors to investigate all reports, including anonymous reports, the nature of anonymous reports makes investigation, determination, and remediation more difficult and, at times, impossible. As a result, you are encouraged to provide your name and contact information.