A former member of the University of Richmond fraternity who wrote a widely shared online post about the experiences of being harassed by a sorority sister after she left a party was fired for harassment.
The woman, Heather Bloom, posted the post on April 14 on the website Vice.com, and has since written about it on social media.
In it, Bloom, who identifies herself as a white woman, recounts the experience of being approached by the fraternity’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon chapter leader after a party on May 15, 2017.
She claims the sister approached her at the door and asked, “Why don’t you wear that stupid red and white dress and give us a call?”
Bloom, now 23, says the sister also called her a “racist bitch” and “a bitch,” and that she told her that she would not be welcome in the fraternity house.
The sorority’s social media manager responded to the post by saying that it was a “misunderstanding” that the sister was not welcome in any fraternities and that the chapter did not have a policy that said “all members are welcome.”
But the post quickly gained a large following and sparked backlash.
A month later, after a video of the encounter was released, the chapter’s president announced the group would be canceling the chapter.
The next day, Vice published a statement saying the group had decided to rescind the offer of membership.
The university subsequently released a statement apologizing for the “miscommunication” and saying it was “reviewing” the post.
However, the university said that its review had “not determined that the post was false, misleading, or otherwise in violation of the university’s policies.”
The university said the chapter will be allowed to continue its life in the Sigma Alpha chapter, and that members of the sorority will be given counseling and mentoring.
The school also issued an apology to Bloom.
“We are committed to fostering a welcoming environment and community for all,” the statement read.
“However, it has come to our attention that some members of our fraternity were not as forthcoming as they should have been.
This led to a misunderstanding that resulted in the inappropriate behavior.”
Vice has since removed the post, but the group has not retracted its offer to Bloom, according to the New York Times.
The group is no longer a part of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity.