The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

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The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus

Signal

‘BROTHEL BILL’ DEBUNKED

The truth about housing for the Greek system at California State University, Stanislaus has been uncovered: the so-called brothel bill is a myth.
Rumors have circulated through Turlock that the reason CSU Stanislaus does not have a row of houses belonging to the sororities and fraternities on campus, a Greek Row, is due to an outdated ordinance. This ordinance is commonly, and falsely, referred to as a “brothel bill.”
“From my understanding we do not have Greek housing because of a Turlock city ordinance that states any residence that has more than six people of the same sex living under the same roof, that residence is considered a brothel,” Dominic Borrelli (junior, History) of Theta Chi said.
While the city of Turlock does have zoning regulations stating that adult entertainment is not permitted in residential districts and size restrictions refer to occupancy as “one family” or “multiple families,” nothing restricts in writing how many people, related or not, can reside in one residence in Turlock.
No ordinance states that a certain number of residents equates a brothel.
The “brothel bill,” according to false stories circulated through California, Colorado, Illinois and other states all over the country, is an ancient policy stating that a given number of people living together who are not related by blood or marriage constitutes a brothel.
The existence of an actual brothel bill was debunked by Barbara Mikkelson, co-creator of snopes.com, known for investigating the validity of urban legends.
“This mistaken belief has been recorded since the 1960s and is probably a great deal older than that,” Mikkelson said on her website.
“Short and sweet, if any so-called ‘brothel laws’ anywhere tie a building’s classification as a bordello to the number of occupants, we’ve yet to find documentation that proves this.”
Some areas in the United States, most notably Evanston, Illinois, do have occupancy laws that restrict the amount of people that are not blood-related living together, but these regulations do not label those places as brothels or establishments of promiscuity.
No area in Stanislaus County, however, has such an ordinance.
The lack of presence Greek housing has in Turlock all comes down to finances and what it would take for the houses to be “official” in the eyes of CSU Stanislaus.
“If it was something [official], Housing would have to work on zoning an area for homes or even something like dorms,” Nicole Turner, Greek advisor, said.
This area would have to be on campus or located in an area owned by CSU Stanislaus, and the funds would have to come from the Greek organizations that wanted to live there.
“We did talk about, in the past, zoning off certain dorm sections so that there could be like fraternities all living in one part of Housing or sororities all living in one part of Housing,” Turner said.
“But that was something that was talked about a while ago.”
While there is nothing official by the city or the university prohibiting Greek houses, there are restrictions preventing Warriors from having their own Greek Row.
“We don’t have anything in writing that says you cannot have a house,” Turner said.
“But we have more multicultural or local sororities and fraternities versus, you know, national organizations. There’s no way a local organization could afford the cost of building a home.”
But now it has been clarified that the reasons against CSU Stanislaus having a Greek Row are monetary and not legal, and that knowledge may be what the students in the Greek system need in order to make the change they wish to see on campus.
“I feel like it’s only acceptable to make the Greek community pay for it,” Katie Copeland (junior, Business Administration) of Phi Sigma Sigma said.
“I wouldn’t mind paying to have Greek housing if it meant that my sisters and I could get that experience.”
Though the desire may be there, some worry that the funds never will be.
“I would still love to see Greek housing at Stan, but I know it’ll never happen for a few reasons,” Borrelli said.
“One, no Greek org has enough money or due-paying members to afford house upkeep on that magnitude. And two, there’s no location for a Greek Row that’s out of the way of residential housing. That’s a big problem because you put a bunch of college men and women in a similar location all day long, the noise level would be crazy and cops would have a hay day.”

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‘BROTHEL BILL’ DEBUNKED