FAQ - Greek Life De-Ratification

**Trigger Warning: Sexual Violence**

Students are able to access support at any time for any issue that may arise. Here are the resources available:

  • Sexual Violence Support and Education on Campus: www.ulethbridge.ca/sexual-violence
  • Sexual Violence Prevention Educator: sexualviolenceinfo@uleth.ca
  • Counselling Services: ulethbridge.ca/counselling
  • Courtney Smith, Sexual Violence Prevention Educator can be contacted at (courtney.smith3@uleth.ca
  • Security Services has a 24hr helpline (403-329-2345), or you can contact this number for general inquiries (403-329-2549) 
  • Safewalk can be contacted and is available through the uLethbridge Safe mobile app, or by calling Security Services here (403-329-2345).
  • Chinook Sexual Assault Centre can be contacted at this number (403-694-1094) or through their website: https://csacleth.ca/
  • Alberta Association of Sexual Assault Services can be contacted through their website: https://assas.org

Frequently Asked Questions:

Why did an investigation happen?

The ULSU and the University of Lethbridge have had growing concerns with issues surrounding sexual violence on campus, specifically its prevalence in Greek Life. The joint committee decided the best course of action was to engage a third-party investigation into the overall culture of these organizations, and proceed with an appropriate course of action per recommendations from the investigator, and discussion among relevant parties. 

What is the membership of the joint committee?

  • ULSU President, Holly Kletke
  • ULSU VP External, Ryan Lindblad
  • ULSU General Manager, Cheri Pokarney
  • Associate Vice President of Student Affairs, Kathleen Massey
  • Executive Director of Student Services, Mark Slomp
  • Chief Safety Officer, Doug Mackie
  • Counselling Services Manager, Jennifer Ellis-Toddington
  • Sexual Violence Prevention Educator, Carmen Guenther
  • Legal Counsel and Privacy Officer, Scott Harling

How was this decision reached?

The authority by which the ULSU was able to execute this decision initially happened at the executive level on September 3rd where the ULSU Executive Council met to put all 3 Greek life organizations on probation until the next General Assembly meeting. (ULSU Bylaw 32.3.2., MOTION [22844EC]). All Greek life executives were informed of the actions taken against their student organizations and that the motion for deratification was on the table for the next scheduled General Assembly meeting. The Greek Life executives waived the two-week period to prepare their defence and instead an emergency meeting was called on Monday, September 13th. The agenda had 3 separate motions for each respective organization to be de-ratified, and the General Assembly voted in favour of deratifying all 3 organizations (Policy, Policy, Bylaw 34.4).

To read more about the bylaws, procedures and policies as well as approved minutes please visit ulsu.ca//ga-minutes. Minutes are only published after they are approved at a regularly scheduled meeting.

Why was VPSA’s signature not included in the press release?

The VPSA’s signature was not included on the press release due to her obligation to abstain from voting on the motion per our conflict of interest bylaw: Bylaw 22 - Conflict of Interest, located in our operations manual. The VPSA was still consulted and participated in the discussion at the General Assembly meeting where the motion took place.

What is the cost of this investigation?

As the University of Lethbridge played a joint role in commissioning the investigation, its cost will be shared equally among the ULSU and University administration. Once we receive the invoice, the General Assembly will make a motion for the cost according to governance procedures.

Do students have access to the minutes of this motion being passed at a General Assembly meeting?

Minutes for previous General assembly meetings are motioned to be approved at the following regularly scheduled meeting of the General Assembly. This means that after the General Assembly has met and approved the meeting at our regularly scheduled September 23rd meeting, the minutes will become available.

Will the contents of the investigation report be released?

Out of respect for and to ensure the protection of survivors and those who participated in the investigation, we will not be releasing the full report as this would expose those who have entrusted us to keep them anonymous. The investigator also delivered the report with strict privilege and confidentiality requirements. The redacted and anonymous recommendations report will not be shared for the same reason as above. However, the student leaders who were democratically elected to represent students were granted privilege by the investigator to see the redacted and anonymous recommendations report prior to the motion being moved, to further inform their decision. 

Why haven’t you expelled the perpetrators rather than de-ratifying the Greek Life organizations?

The recommendations report contained redacted and anonymous findings that indicated a culture of sexual violence within Greek Life on campus. The report did not investigate or report on any individual findings or complaints leveraged. Representatives of the ULSU and most members of the joint committee have no knowledge of the names of individuals who participated, and also do not have the power, jurisdiction, or right to request that any students be formally investigated, unless there is a formal complaint filed with the University per the Sexual Violence policy. It is an individual choice to come forward, as well as a choice to ask for action, we cannot and will not ask any survivors or members of Greek Life to provide names of perpetrators, as we will be respecting the autonomy of survivors at all times. As well, the investigation was not conducted to investigate specific complaints, but rather to investigate the overall culture of sexual misconduct and harassment among the organizations, and the decision to de-ratify was made with the intention of giving the space for holistic and substantial change.

Was the Lethbridge Police involved?

Though the joint committee considered utilizing Lethbridge Police Services to conduct the investigation, the joint committee decided that an objective, third-party human resources investigator with experience in issues related to post-secondary and sexual violence specifically was the best option to conduct this investigation, as it would protect the safety and confidentiality of individuals who choose to come forward. 

With Greek Life being de-ratified, does that mean it will never return to the University of Lethbridge?   

No. All returning clubs must be ratified each year. We welcome members and leadership of Greek Life to take this year to reflect on this issue, and to develop policies and procedures that will enact positive change. We know that Greek Life has been an important and fulfilling part of campus life for many past and current students. The ULSU Executive will be working with Greek Life leadership to address areas for improvement while striving to ensure that re-ratification is possible in the future.

If you have any more questions please contact Holly Kletke at su.president@uleth.ca. Please visit https://ulsu.ca/operations-manual if you have any questions about our policies & by-laws.