Making consent and healthy relationships part of what it means to be a fraternity brother or sorority sister.
The Alpha Sigma Phi website states – “We are a Fraternity founded upon the values of character…Our values call us to better ourselves through our actions and words.” The Five Values of Alpha Sigma Phi call on their brothers to be their best, including promoting consent and preventing sexual violence on campus. Alpha Sigma Phi has already taken huge steps to be leaders in this work. Their partnership with RAINN has shown a commitment towards using the resources of the Fraternity to help prevent sexual violence, as well as to develop a culture of consent within the Fraternity where sexual assault is not acceptable. According to their site, Alpha Sigma Phi is working with RAINN to develop “a checklist of materials that our chapters and colonies can use to create a safer community.”(1) We’re excited to see and support the work that Alpha Sigma Phi is able to accomplish with RAINN. This work, of course, is backed by The Five Values of Alpha Sigma Phi, which are:
Silence, as a value of Alpha Sigma Phi, is not about refusing to stand up for what is right, but rather “an honest desire to truly listen to others”. A brother of Alpha Sigma Phi will always listen to survivors, respecting their experience and supporting them. In addition, they will listen when others talk about what they can do to make their fraternity better. When a brother of Alpha Sigma Phi stands up and says what they can do to promote consent in their chapter, his brothers listen. The value of silence empowers brothers to grow as college men, to better both themselves and their chapter, and to be a chapter that is open to change that will help them better live their values.
Charity, or, in the term most frequently used in Greek Life, philanthropy, is not simply about raising money for an organization. Fundraising for a good cause is an important and fantastic aspect of all of Greek Life, however to embody the value of Charity, it is as much about doing good for your campus and your chapter as it is about the national organization you’re able to raise money for. An Alpha Sigma Phi is charitable is he “sacrifices of himself to help others and seeks not recognition in return”. A chapter which works to support survivors and work to promote consent within their community creates a safer community and culture for the rest of campus as well as within their brotherhood. It is not always the easiest work, to reflect on what your chapter can do to create a culture of consent, but it is work to better one selves for the sake of others.
An Alpha Sigma Phi who lives the value of Purity “does not shrink from adversity or lofty goals”. As the It’s On Us campaign, which many national fraternities and individual chapters have pledged to be a part of, we as fraternity men need to work to prevent sexual violence and to promote a culture of consent. While there is a lot of work to be done, Alpha Sigma Phi’s are taking steps to live up to this commitment. To live the value of purity, Alpha Sigma Phi chapters can take steps to be fraternity men who promote a culture of consent and prevent sexual violence. To do so, to be a brother for consent, is to be “moral and a gentleman in the finest sense of the word”.
The best description of Honor, as it relates to promoting consent within your chapter, is a brother who is “willing to endure scorn or ostracism rather than conform to the pressures of peers, superiors, or the fashion of the day”. Many sites and movies suggest that fraternities do not hold the values written within our organizations, that they do not represent the best of college men. Living the value of honor means taking a stand to promote a culture of consent and to prevent sexual violence on your campus, even if it is not always the easiest thing to work towards as a fraternity. Chapters of Alpha Sigma Phi can still have great parties that have guidelines that help to prevent sexual violence.
Patriotism is more than just support and pride for one’s country, which brothers of Alpha Sigma Phi have done proudly. It is also to promote the best of what, as a national community, we can represent. The White House’s It’s On Us campaign
represents a commitment to make promoting consent and preventing sexual violence a national value. To be patriotic in the best sense of the word, a brother of Alpha Sigma Phi works to spread and support this value. Leading awareness events, educating the entire chapter, and creating a culture in which sexual violence is unacceptable is to be patriotic.The best of country and the best of brotherhood is found in developing a culture of consent.
The Five Values of Alpha Sigma Phi end with the following statement – “Thus our Purpose is to Better the Man through the creation and perpetuation of brotherhood founded upon the values of character: Silence, Charity, Purity, Honor, and Patriotism.” Embedded in this purpose is a commitment to promoting a culture of consent with chapters of Alpha Sigma Phi, to become a group of brothers who work to prevent sexual violence on their campus.