Hazing and “Rites Of Passage” - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers

Hazing and “Rites Of Passage”

Recently some Ryerson graduates were chastised in the press for a hazing stunt. These students will receive no punishment for forcing their classmates to crawl through slush in their underwear. While disgusting, thankfully no one was hurt.

This brings up an interesting issue, hazing. This not so innocent ritual of initiating students into a group to prove loyalty and kinsmenship can be extremely dangerous.

Many children die and others are injured during these rituals. Excessive drinking and out of control behavior can lead to devastating consequences.

Just this past December, frat members in Chicago were charged when one of their hazing incidents led to death. A young man, David Bogenberger, died from excessive drinking.

Hazingprevention.org reports 1.5 million incidents of hazing occur in high schools per year in the United States. This stat is likely low as these types of events are generally underreported. As of 2010, 96 children in the United States have died from hazing incidents.

It is important to speak to your children and actively encourage them not to participate in these antiquated and often dangerous “rites of passage.” Alert the school immediately of these activities.

It is certainly not worth the health of your child to “prove” something to their fellow classmates. Schools and police should be notified immediately so they can take preventative action.

While the school has a duty to reasonably protect your child, they cannot do so in all circumstances unless they are notified of the pending danger. So be proactive if you suspect anything.

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