IU fraternities pledge to stop sexual assault on campus

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BLOOMINGTON - Hundreds of fraternity brothers at Indiana University's Bloomington campus made a move Thursday to fight sexual assaults on campus.

Twenty-one fraternities wrote their own statements condemning the act, pledged to take whatever action necessary to stop and prevent it, and take action against brothers who cross the line.

"They're gone. We don't tolerate it at all," said Phi Delta Theta brother and senior Joe Clifford. "Even anything close to sexual assault, if a guy is being creepy, if a guy is crossing any boundaries a woman has, you know we're nipping it in the bud right there. Doing what we can to make sure it doesn't even get to a sexual assault."

The move got national attention from the Huffington Post, which Clifford said would only help their efforts.

"If all of us aren't buying into this issue, the problem is not going to be solved."

Clifford, who also serves on the Interfraternity Council on campus, helped bring the idea to all the fraternities. Ian Shoup, president of Phi Kappa Psi and a member of the Council, got his house on board.

"We all know somebody who's been associated with sexual assault," said Shoup. "I think of friends who know friends who've been affected and I know how hard it is for them."

According to the most recent CLERY statistics, there were 27 forcible sexual offense cases reported on the Bloomington campus in 2012. That number was 16 in 2010. Officials say the numbers could have grown, because students are getting more comfortable reporting the crime.

Clifford hopes by taking a stand, IU's Greek community can create a safer environment for everyone.

"Part of being brotherly is showing each other what the right thing to do is," he said. "I think that what separates boys from men is being able to treat women with respect."

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