Adam’s Law, requiring hazing prevention training in college, is signed into law

by Eric Kolenich, Richmond Times-Dispatch

Courtney White (left), cousin of Adam Oakes, and Oakes’ parents, Eric (center) and Linda Oakes (right), were introduced at the state Capitol in Richmond. BOB BROWN/RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH

Gov. Glenn Youngkin has signed into law two identical bills that require college students to undergo hazing prevention training, a year after the death of Virginia Commonwealth University freshman.

Named for Adam Oakes, “Adam’s Law” passed unanimously in the Senate and received 98 of 100 votes in the House. Oakes died of alcohol poisoning in 2021 following a fraternity initiation, and his family championed the bills.

Under the law, colleges will be required to provide student organizations with in-person education on hazing, alcohol intoxication and their school’s policies. Chapter advisors will be required to undergo training, too.

It also requires colleges to post on their websites the violations committed by their student organizations.

The law will give immunity to bystanders guilty of drug or alcohol violations who report — a mechanism to encourage students to report wrongdoing.

Private colleges also are subject to the law, which takes effect July 1.

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