Greeks split over Arkeo’s role ahead of April vote

Arkeo is receiving mixed reviews in the weeks leading up to voting day.

by Amanda Bankston

Arkeo, a greek party police system that was months in the making, is receiving mixed reviews in the weeks leading up to voting day, when greek leadership will decide whether to put it into action.
A network of peer observers prepared to report everything from drinking games to hard alcohol, Arkeo would be a peer-monitoring system run by and for greeks.
Some sorority members have questioned why the checklist lacks provisions that directly address womenâÄôs safety, especially since Arkeo sprang from a series of sexual assault allegations.
While observing parties, volunteers would not intervene in any situations; they would simply report them to the Interfraternity Council, said Panhellenic Council President Megan McMurray. As it stands, the Arkeo constitution âÄî which is scheduled for an April 17 vote âÄî has what some see as vague wording that could suggest volunteers actually can intervene.
Sober hosts are to guide Arkeo observers through fraternity houses and decide which rooms the observer can or canâÄôt see, Kristen Hebert, a founder and volunteer coordinator for Arkeo, said.
The group has a checklist of what fraternities must abide by to avoid being reported.
Along with bigger rules like no hard liquor and no drinking games, fraternity parties must also have a single entrance with a guest list and wristbands for those 21 years of age or older, according to a PowerPoint presentation Hebert made.
Martin Cech, a founder and director of operations for the group, said sexual assault is difficult to address on a checklist and will only be resolved through adequate education, which the group plans to provide through partnerships with groups like the Aurora Center.
âÄúWeâÄôre not sure how we can prevent sexual assault from happening, but our goal is to create a safe environment for everyone,âÄù Cech said.
McMurray said sheâÄôs heard concerns over the lack of direct reference to sexual assault on the checklist but still hopes ArkeoâÄôs presence will make women feel better about attending greek functions.
âÄúWomen will feel safer going to these events because they will be really regulated,âÄù she said.
Cech said Arkeo members have spent the past few weeks combating misconceptions and rumors about the group.
âÄúA large misconception is that itâÄôs Arkeo making changes, when itâÄôs really [the] IFC making changes,âÄù Hebert said. âÄúArkeo is just a tool to make sure that these changes are followed.âÄù
Arkeo organizers hosted a town hall meeting Sunday where greeks asked questions and made suggestions for the group.
In order to become official, the groupâÄôs constitution must agree with the IFC and PHCâÄôs risk management bylaws, McMurray said.
Arkeo has a few more obstacles before the vote.
âÄúWeâÄôre still hammering out issues of insurance and liability,âÄù Cech said.
Until the April vote, the group will continue to revise its constitution to meet the needs of the campus community, Cech said.
âÄúIâÄôm looking forward to a safer environment when I go to these events with my friends,âÄù Hebert said.