NY State Hazing Laws

New York State Law and Upcoming Legislation

New York State Penal Law, Chapter 716, Section 1 (effective November 1, 1988)

120.16: Hazing in the first degree
A  person is guilty of hazing in the first degree when, in the course of  another  person's  initiation into or affiliation with any organization, he intentionally or recklessly engages in conduct which creates a substantial risk of physical injury to such other person or a third person and thereby causes such injury. 
Hazing in the first degree is a class A misdemeanor.

120.17: Hazing in the second degree
A person is guilty of hazing in the second degree when, in the course of another person's initiation or affiliation with any organization, he intentionally or recklessly engages in conduct  which creates a substantial risk of physical injury to such other person or a third person. 
Hazing in the second degree is a violation.


Civil Penalties

In addition to the consequences of violating University policies and state law prohibiting hazing, both individuals and chapters can be sued in civil court for mental or physical harm that results from hazing. Individual group members (and their parents), group leaders, advisors, the organization, and national affiliates may be sued. Hazing on college campuses has resulted in numerous successful lawsuits.

Bill currently making its way through the New York State Senate:  S1937-2011: Provides increased penalties and education for hazing, underage drinking and drug use within athletic teams, fraternities and sororities at college campuses


http://open.nysenate.gov/legislation/bill/S1937-2011

Requires colleges to educate the campus community on bias-related crime, hazing, underage drinking and illegal drug use; expands authority of colleges to regulate conduct by college and student government organizations and clubs, athletic teams and clubs, alumni organizations, fraternities, sororities, and any other organization that has access to and use of the college facilities; requires colleges to adopt rules prohibiting hazing, underage drinking and illegal drug use; requires colleges to inform incoming students of and to train residence hall staff in the prohibitions against hazing, underage drinking and illegal drug use; requires colleges to establish penalties for hazing, underage drinking and illegal drug use.