Members of the University of Oregon‘s Delta Upsilon and Delta Tau Delta fraternities have announced they still start accepting male-identified transgender students into their ranks. Both frats say they haven’t had any negative reactions to the decision.
“Fraternities and sororities are really powerful units for change. We have a big presence and influence on campus, and we want the culture to be more inclusive,” Henry Korman, the vice president of loss prevention for Delta Upsilon, told the Oregonian. “We want to change the culture from the inside.”
Delta Upsilon is known as a progressive and inclusive fraternity on campus. Originally formed with a pledge to fight misogyny, the frat became a chartered group last fall and rewrote their bylaws to be as inclusive as possible.
“Me and a few other guys, we really wanted language that did not exclude transmales. So we changed it to say any self-identified male student. I really wanted to make sure we weren’t excluding any men from joining our fraternity,” Korman said.
Delta Tau Delta’s national leadership led the push to change the group’s nondiscrimination requirements. The policy says the fraternity should be “open to all men of superior character including transgender males.”
“There are people in the community who might not have a comfortable place, a social group where they fit in,” Alec Malnati, the local president, said. “I’m just really hopeful we can be that place for people.”
A handful of Delta Tau Delta’s membership at the university are gay. Neither group has any current transgender members but have started recruitment efforts via the school’s LGBTQ organizations.
While the national leadership of the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity has said they are considering accepting transgender men as well, no decision has been made yet.