Plan to combat dance violence

By Eric Krol

The NIU administration has come up with a plan to combat violence at greek dances held at the Holmes Student Center.

The office for Student Affairs released a flier today which outlines the administration’s solutions to violence at student center dances.

The guidelines come on the heels of a fight at a fraternity dance last Friday between members of a Chicago street gang and Alpha Phi Alpha, an NIU fraternity.

Donald Buckner, assistant vice president for Student Affairs, said the rules were put into effect as “a natural outgrowth” of last weekend’s events.

The guidelines list four main points:

‘ All individuals entering dances at any time will be frisked by security personnel.

‘ Individuals are strongly discouraged from bringing purses or backpacks to dances and any brought to dances must be emptied and will be searched prior to entry.

‘ NIU students must present their university photo identification for entry.

‘ All guests must present a photo identification card and be signed in by their NIU host who will be responsible for apprising them of university regulations and taking responsibility for their adherence to such regulations.

The two new rules are that non-NIU students must be signed in as guests by students and purses must be emptied. Students previously only had to show identification and had to open purses before entry. Purses can be used to smuggle guns and other weapons into the dance.

The Student Affairs office met this week to decide how to handle the problems, Buckner said. There are two dances scheduled for this weekend, he added.

The rules will apply for this weekend’s dances and will be modified according to the outcome.

Buckner said Black Greek Council President Anita McNulty and members of the organizations holding this weekend’s dances were contacted for input about the rules.

McNulty said she was satisfied and pleased with the amount of input she was allowed to offer. Although she said she had not seen the flier yet, “from what (Buckner) read me, it sounds like a good idea.”

“It’s sad that we had to go this far,” McNulty said, “but if that’s what it takes then that’s okay.”

“We kind of helped (Buckner) along on these rules,” said Tonia Havard, president of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.

Havard expressed optimism about the new rules. “I think it’ll be real successful if everyone follows the rules,” she said.