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Women sue Yale, saying off-campus fraternities discriminate, enable abuse

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Three women sued Yale University and nine fraternities on Tuesday, saying the off-campus clubs harbored a culture of sexual discrimination and assault, and asking the court to order the all-male social organizations to admit women.

All three undergraduate students of the Ivy League college said were groped at parties held at fraternity houses off campus during their first semesters at the school, according to the complaint filed in federal court in New Haven, Connecticut.

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Ry Walker, a 20-year-old college junior from New York, said that someone had pulled up her skirt and grabbed her crotch at a dark and crowded party in 2016, but that she did not report the incident as she had not seen who had groped her. She said she later realized many Yale women had had similar experiences.

The women said the fraternities discriminated against them by rejecting them on the basis of gender, a decision that they said potentially denied them access to networking opportunities that could help their later careers.

Yale spokesman Thomas Conroy declined to comment on the lawsuit.

He forwarded a January message sent to students by the school’s dean about a university investigation that found evidence of sexual misconduct at one of the nine fraternities targeted in the women’s lawsuit.

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“I condemn the culture described in these accounts; it runs counter to our community’s values of making everyone feel welcome, respected, and safe,” Dean Marvin Chun said in the message. “I also offer some plain advice about events like these: don’t go to them.”

Reporting by Katharine Jackson in Washington; Editing by Scott Malone

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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