Changes Brewing for Sex Week at Yale

Yale's name and facilities cannot be used for corporate sponsorship or undesirable events.

Sex Week at Yale has been part of Yale tradition since 2002, but a committee working to change the climate on the campus after claims of sexual misconduct is taking issue with it.

Now, Yale plans to make some changes to the biennial festivities.

The school came under fire in October 2010 after members of a fraternity chanted, "No means yes," and other derogatory remarks aimed at women.

That led to students filing a complaint alleging Title IX violations and Yale created the Advisory Committee on Campus Climate to address allegations of sexual harassment and other misconduct.

The committee has found Sex Week at Yale to be “highly problematic.”

The week-long series has included public services like free STD testing, but also has allowed students to take workshops on masturbation and how to give oral sex. 

“Over time, this event clearly has lost the focus of its stated intention,” the report states.

The committee has recommended that Yale remove its name from the event and prohibit organizers from holding events at Yale facilities. 

While the school president’s view of Sex Week differs from the committee’s, there are some changes brewing.

Yale president Richard Levin said Dean Mary Miller suggested allowing organizers to propose a program for next semester that might warrant continuing the event on campus and he is allowing it.

“We have no intention of suppressing the students’ rights to free expression. But we will not allow the University’s facilities or name to be used in the service of corporate sponsors and private inurement of student organizers.”

Although the event promotes some serious topics, including national sex trafficking, it has in recent years “prominently featured titillating displays, “adult” film stars and commercial sponsors of such material, the advisory committee on campus climate said.

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