COLUMBIA, SC (FOX Carolina) - South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster on Wednesday signed a permanent version of the Tucker Hipps Transparency Act into law.
Cindy Hipps posted a celebratory status update to her Facebook page on April 18 after the bill she had been pushing to get passed since it's pre-filing in December 2018 passed in the South Carolina state senate, following previous passage in the state House. Then, she wrote, it was "Onward to the Governor!"
On Wednesday, May 8, the bill made it to McMaster's desk and the governor signed it into law.
The road to this milestone has not been easy for Cindy. The fact that she is doing this has a tragic origin story.
The bill is named after Hipps' late son, Tucker. On September 22, 2014, Tucker was found dead under a bridge on Lake Hartwell. His family believes the Clemson University student and member of the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity died as a result of hazing, leading to a lengthy legal battle pitting Tucker's parents against Clemson and Tucker's former fraternity brothers.
Since Tucker's passing, Cindy has made herself an ardent voice against hazing, sharing her story and calling for change from lawmakers. A version of the Tucker Hipps Transparency Act was passed in 2016, requiring higher education institutions to maintain reports of misconduct associated with sororities in fraternities.
The original version of the act included the stipulation that it would expire after three years. Since then, the Hipps family has been pushing for a permanent version of the Tucker Hipps Transparency Act to be passed. In October 2018, her voice gained the ear of state lawmakers with the introduction of a new bill, to amend the act and make it permanent.
Previous coverage: Family of Tucker Hipps continues fight against hazing