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Fraternity opens
its arms to transgender students

Fraternity opens
its arms to transgender students

Sigma Phi Beta's national board of directors enacts groundbreaking policy.

Sigma Phi Beta made a bold move on Sunday, when the fraternity's national board of directors voted to allow transgender students to join its ranks.

The new policy allows any individual who identifies as male--regardless of the legal recognition of their gender--to seek membership in Sigma Phi Beta. The policy also allows members to maintain their membership if at a later date they decide to change their gender to female.

Sigma Phi Beta's decision was hailed by transgender activists.

"Sigma Phi Beta's decision to welcome transgender fraternity members is in direct fulfillment of the Greek Life values of self-determination, self-actualization, and brotherhood," said transgender activist, educator, and author Jamison Green. "The inclusion of gay and transgender students in the fraternity system ensures the formative experience of true brotherhood."

Sigma Phi Beta was originally formed as a local chapter at Arizona State University in 2003. The inclusive fraternity formed its own national parent organization in July 2005. Sigma Phi Beta president and chairman Sam Holdren said his fraternity's decision to allow transgender members is a continuation of their supportive policies.

"Students develop best in environments where they feel valued, protected, accepted, and socially connected to their peers," Holdren said. (The Advocate)

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