ATHENS, Ohio (WSAZ) -- UPDATE 10/9/19 @ 10:30 p.m.
Nearly a week after we reported about fraternity suspensions at Ohio University, new information has come out about three sororities there.
In the latest development, three sororities facing hazing allegations have been suspended. (Source: MGN)
They're now accused of hazing incidents. Delta Zeta, Phi Beta Phi and Chi Omega sororities were all put on suspension, along with a professional fraternity known as Phi Chi Theta.
An investigation at Ohio University prompted a suspension of all 15 fraternities on campus. However, not all have hazing allegations. Nine of the 15 currently do.
The university reports at this time that none of the allegations rise to a level of what they call "actionable criminal activitiy."
Details of the allegations aren't being released at this time.
ORIGINAL STORY 10/3/19
All fraternities at Ohio University's Athens campus have been suspended, effective immediately.
According to a release from Ohio University, the decision was made due to a growing concern of hazing allegations against seven Interfraternity Council (IFC) chapters.
Ohio University says all chapter events, meetings, and activities have been suspended until further notice. That includes socials, philanthropy, retreats, intramurals, and organized participation in Homecoming.
The release says Vice President for Student Affairs Jason Pina and Dean of Students Jenny Hall-Jones made the decision and sent this letter to all IFC chapter presidents Thursday.
Only seven fraternities face hazing allegations, but university officials suspended all 15 chapters as a "proactive step" so IFC members can reflect and redefine the Greek community.
"It is deeply troubling that seven of our Interfraternity Council (IFC) chapters have been or will be under investigation this semester for possible violations of the University’s Student Code of Conduct," the letter states. "These troubling allegations, which will be thoroughly investigated, indicate a potentially escalating systemic culture within our IFC organizations, and Ohio University will not put at risk the health and safety of our students. As a result: I am hereby suspending all chapter operations for Interfraternity Council chapters until further notice, effective immediately."
According to the letter, this began when the university expelled Sigma Pi last spring as a result of hazing.
Earlier this week, the administration received new allegations against two other IFC chapters. The fraternity members were accused of hazing new members. After the allegations were made, those chapters were "placed on a cease and desist from Community Standards and Student Responsibility (CSSR)."
Tuesday, the Office of the Dean of Students received reports of hazing at five more chapters. Those chapters will receive their own cease and desist letters and notices of investigation within the next few days.
During the suspension, each chapter is expected to come up with a plan and implementation timeline "to ensure that the culture of their organization is aligned with the stated values of our Sorority and Fraternity community, responsibilities outlined in the University’s Student Code of Conduct and expectations of their respective inter/national organization."
Sophomores are still allowed to live in their fraternity houses. The only meetings or events allowed are those planned by the Office of Community Standards and Student Responsibility or the Office of Sorority and Fraternity Life."
University officials are also planning forums to continue the dialogue.
"Being a member of the Sorority and Fraternity community at Ohio University gives you the ability to make a tremendous positive impact on OHIO students, our campus, and our community," the letter states. "The values that your organizations espouse encourage members to hold themselves to a higher standard. However, when individual members or organizations fail to live up to the standards and values set forth by the university, chapters and inter/national organizations, the entire Sorority and Fraternity community suffers."
Ohio student Paul Roth says he has friends at fraternities where accusations of hazing were not made. He says those students feel like they're being unfairly punished for the actions of others.
"I know they're really upset, because it's like a few did something wrong, and everybody else gets taken out for it," Roth said. "That being said, I think it is fair to view the seven that are having issues that did have complaints -- you can't brush those things under the carpet, because that's how issues like this keep happening."
You can report hazing and other instances of misconduct here.
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