Anti-Hazing Policy

Under state law, hazing includes “any action or situation that recklessly or intentionally endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a student or which willfully destroys or removes public or private property for the purpose of initiation or admission into or affiliation with, or as a condition for continued membership in, any organization operating under the sanction of or recognized as an organization by an institution”.

The state of Pennsylvania further defines hazing as

any brutality of a physical nature, such as whipping, beating, branding, forced calisthenics, exposure to the elements, forced consumption of any food, liquor, drug or other substance, or any other forced physical activity which could adversely affect the physical health and safety of the individual, and shall include any activity which would subject the individual to extreme mental stress, such as sleep deprivation, forced exclusion from social contact, forced conduct which could result in extreme embarrassment, or any other forced activity which could adversely affect the mental health or dignity of the individual, or any willful destruction or removal of public or private property. For purposes of this definition, any activity as described in this definition upon which the initiation or admission into or affiliation with or continued membership in an organization is directly or indirectly conditioned shall be presumed to be “forced” activity, the willingness of an individual to participate in such activity notwithstanding.

As a Mercy school committed to the concern for the dignity of all persons, we strive to make all members of our community feel safe, comfortable and included. It is the role of the older students to help make new students feel welcome and valued as class members and participants in athletics and other extracurricular activities. At no time is it acceptable to participate in any type of hazing as defined above or other behavior in which individuals or groups are treated as subservient to other individuals or groups or in which certain individuals or groups are made to perform demeaning tasks in order to be accepted by the group. Any such behavior will be treated seriously, and consequences may include Tier 2 or 3 detention, suspension or removal from the athletic team or extracurricular group, expulsion and/or referral to appropriate authorities for criminal prosecution.