Panhellenic Council looks to improve safety

Committee of representatives will work to update bylaws for all WSU sorority chapters



WSU Panhellenic Council President Ani Duni says community outreach and transparency are two of the goals laid out in ‘Forward 19’ Thursday afternoon in the CUB. Duni says Panhellenic hopes to include more diverse programs and to improve overall inclusivity on campus.

CARMEN JARAMILLO, Evergreen reporter

The WSU Panhellenic Council may revise bylaws in the coming months to focus on safety as part of an initiative called “Forward 19.”

Panhellenic President Ani Duni said traditionally Panhellenic councils, which serve for one year, set a checklist of goals at the beginning of the year they want each sorority chapter to meet.

This year, she said, the Panhellenic Council chose to expand the theme by making it more value and goal-oriented under the “Forward 19” title. The three objectives are to move the Greek system forward through “transparency, community and growth.”

“We wanted to take a different approach and make it more geared towards our personal council’s goals and how we best can serve our community,” Duni said.

One part of the transparency aspect, she said, is potential revisions and additions to the Panhellenic bylaws, which all sororities must follow. A bylaw committee made up of representatives from each chapter will form and have its first meeting this month.

Duni said she wants the new bylaws to focus on standards that ensure safety, similar to standards that were implemented by the WSU Interfraternity Council.

Since January 2018, WSU fraternities have been participating in a health and safety pilot program through the North American Interfraternity Conference. Part of this program was revised health and safety standards, she said.

According to the NAIC website, the program included standards like “no hard alcohol in fraternity houses” and “Each fraternity community/campus sets standards that reduce and cap the [number] of events each fraternity can have with alcohol.” The mission, according to the website, was to reduce the “frequency and volume of alcohol” in fraternities.

Duni said she hopes the Panhellenic Council can mirror these changes within its own bylaws.

“We want to make sure we hold our women accountable just as much as the men are being held accountable,” she said.

Taylor Heersink, Panhellenic vice president of public relations, said she thinks the “Forward 19” values will help Greek women better understand the function of the Panhellenic Council.

She also said it will help strengthen the Greek community, as a whole, through system-wide events and collaborations.

Duni said these changes are unique to the WSU Greek system and she hopes WSU can be a national leader in this area.

“This has never been tried before by a Panhellenic Council,” she said. “This is something our council is trying to take on as its own and trail blaze a little bit.”