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University of Maryland suspends fraternities, sororities pending investigation of unsafe activities

University of Maryland suspends fraternities, sororities pending investigation of unsafe activities
University of Maryland suspends fraternities, sororities pending investigation of unsafe activities 00:49

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — The University of Maryland has ordered fraternities and sororities on campus to suspend social and recruitment activities after the school received multiple reports of unsafe activities.

The letter was sent from the university to fraternities and sororities saying they believe "multiple chapters within the Interfraternity Council (IFC) and Panhellenic Council (PHA) have been conducting activities that have threatened the safety and well-being of members of the University community."

The suspension applies to all organizations affiliated with the College Park campus' Interfraternity Council and Panhellenic Council, which represent 21 fraternities and 16 sororities, respectively.

"You were notified that further allegations of misconduct may result in a cease and desist of activities for one or multiple councils," the letter continues.

The letter says the suspension will be in place indefinitely while an investigation takes place. Fraternities and sororities are barred from any contact with new or prospective members, and barred from hosting any events where alcohol is present, according to the letter.

"Social moratorium prohibits the chapter from hosting any events, on or off-campus, where alcohol is present," the letter said.

The letter also says that current members of the fraternities and sororities are not permitted to contact any new member or prospective new member. 

"This directive means that every current member of the organization must not contact any new member or prospective new member via in-person, telephone, postal mail, any electronic means (including social media), or third-party communication," the letter states. 

After the university launches an investigation, it will inform the organizations about their decision.

"Failure to comply with this cease and desist directive may result in further group or individual sanctions through the Office of Student Conduct," the letter reads. "We expect and appreciate your full compliance with this request and look forward to resolving this matter.  

The action at Maryland comes just days after the University of Virginia suspended its Kappa Sigma chapter after an alleged hazing incident Feb. 21. In addition to the Kappa Sigma suspension, the university's Interfraternity Council imposed a three-week suspension on all of its chapters "as a commitment to anti-hazing efforts and out of respect for the ongoing situation."

Newsoutlets reported the Kappa Sigma chapter at Virginia was suspended after a pledge who had been drinking heavily fell down a staircase and hit his head, leading to his hospitalization.

In Virginia, the 2021 death of a Virginia Commonwealth University student, Adam Oakes, after a fraternity hazing incident resulted in passage of anti-hazing legislation and a nearly $1 million settlement payment from the university to Oakes' family.

The Associated Press contributed to this story

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