American University

AU Students Who Dismantled Fraternity Chapter Say Greek Life Contributes to Racism, Sexual Assault

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All 26 members of the Delta Tau Delta fraternity at American University in Northwest D.C. decided to give up Greek life and dismantle their chapter this summer in the wake of a nationwide movement for social justice.

The former members say that Greek life contributes to racism and sexual assault on campus.

“There are so many studies that have shown that men in fraternities are, I believe, it's three times more likely to rape women when they’re in college,” said Graham Payne-Reichert, former vice president of the university's Delta Tau Delta chapter.

“Women in sororities are much more likely to experience rape or sexual assault. Just the very nature of these Greek organizations basically creates predominantly white spheres that allows racism and bias to continue,” Payne-Reichert said.

"Racism on campus has been progressing and it is incredibly troubling. We think Greek life plays a major, major role into this as over 30 percent of our students are a part of [Greek life]. It's a major part of social life here at AU," former Delta Tau Delta member Max Lempert said.

In a statement, the Interfraternity Council said, “Any call to disband fraternities and sororities may calm current unrest but will fall short of truly dealing with campus wide cultural challenges.”

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“We are working with fraternities and sororities to ensure a healthy environment for their members and others,” American University said in a statement.

The Delta Tau Delta national office gave the following statement to News4:

"At this time the fraternity is considering its future at American University and will make a determination on the chapter status after consultation with the University and fraternity alumni."

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