Hazing News

New York law on hazing update

Sen. Little’s anti-hazing legislation passes in Senate

Posted on: Tuesday, February 12, 2008

ALBANY — A bill introduced by state Sen. Betty Little (R, C, I-Queensbury) that would increase penalties for hazing passed the Senate today.

The legislation, S.1117, would increase the penalty of hazing in the first degree, where hazing causes serious physical injury or death, to a class D felony punishable by up to seven years in prison. The proposal would also create lesser penalties for hazing in which minor or no physical injury occurs.

Hazing in the first degree is currently a class A misdemeanor if the act creates a substantial risk of physical injury to another person during an initiation process.

“Raising awareness to the dangers of hazing is the best approach to keep students safe,” Little said in a prepared statement. “But our laws should also reflect the seriousness of this issue — the potential for injury and loss of life — with stricter, more appropriate penalties.”

Assembly Majority Leader Ron Canestrari is sponsoring a companion bill in the Assembly.

By Hank Nuwer

Journalist Hank Nuwer is the Alaska author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His new book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press. He is married to Malgorzata Wroblewska Nuwer of Warsaw, Poland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Nuwer, former columnist for the Greenville (Ohio)Early Bird, finished a stint as managing editor of the Celina Daily Standard to accept a new position as managing editor of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Alaska.
Nuwer was named the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists columnist of the year in 2021 for his “After Darke” column in the Early Bird. He also won third place for the column in 2022 from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He and his wife Gosia, recently of Union City, Ind., have owned 20 acres in Alaska for many years. “The move is a sort-of coming home for us,” said Nuwer. As a journalist, he’s written about the Alaskan Iditarod sled-dog race and other Alaska topics. Read his musings in his blog at Real Alaska Daily--

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