Home Campus Ohio U suspends all IFC fraternities following several hazing allegations

Ohio U suspends all IFC fraternities following several hazing allegations

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Ohio University moved to suspend all Interfraternity Council fraternities Thursday following several allegations of hazing brought against seven of the 15 fraternities within the council.

The announcement arrived after the university received a rush of hazing reports involving organizations in the IFC, the governing body of the 15 now-suspended fraternities. Earlier this week two reports of hazing were made to the university, and Wednesday five more reports were filed, according to a news release from the university.

This suspension means the fraternities are no longer allowed to host events, hold meetings or participate in homecoming events. If the suspensions persist, nearly half of the 33 greek life organizations at Ohio U will not be represented at homecoming.

For now, Sophomore members of all fraternities will be permitted to remain as residents in their fraternity house, according to Jenny Hall-Jones, senior associate vice president and dean of students.

Hall-Jones wrote a letter to all IFC chapter presidents encouraging fraternity chapters to “pause and reflect” while suspended.

The administration expects each chapter’s leadership to develop a plan to ensure the culture of their organization is in accordance with values of the Sorority and Fraternity life community, outlined within the official Ohio U student code of conduct. Each chapter must also include an implementation timeline for its plan.

Hall-Jones’ letter did not indicate how long each chapter will be suspended.

The university issued a cease and desist order earlier this week to the Ohio U chapter of the ACACIA fraternity following reports that ACACIA had placed “the health and safety” of Ohio U students at risk, according to The Athens NEWS.

As part of the cease and desist, ACACIA members are not allowed to meet or hold events. Furthermore, the fraternity must report their full membership including prospective members.

This isn’t ACACIA’s first clash with administration. Previously ACACIA had been investigated for singing a sexually explicit song on the porch of their fraternity house, according to The Athens NEWS.

At that time an investigation was held and ACACIA was ultimately found not in violation of the student code of conduct. The university however did express that ACACIA’s display didn’t align with the university’s values. During the course of this investigation the university did investigate and found no evidence that ACACIA had been involved in hazing.

These allegations of hazing serve as a reminder of the death of freshman Collin Wiant, who was found unresponsive on Mill Street last year and later died as a result of hazing while he was allegedly a pledge of Sigma Pi, according to The Athens NEWS.

Sigma Pi was expelled by the university earlier this year after it was found in violation of 10 different statues of the student code of conduct, including hazing. Several witnesses stated they were hit with belts, pushed to eat disgusting food, forced to do work for other members and pressured to do narcotics.

Ben Peters contributed to this report.

Editor’s Note: This story was updated to include more information.

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