Watch CBS News

Northwestern University Bans All Social Activities At Campus Fraternities Until At Least Mid-October After Reports Of Drugging; Some Students Want Greek Life Abolished

EVANSTON, Ill. (CBS) -- Northwestern University is suspending social events and recruitment activities for fraternities after reports of people being drugged without consent.

As CBS 2's Steven Graves reported, students protested Sunday night – calling for Greek life at Northwestern to be abolished altogether.

Northwestern announced Saturday that it had received a report from someone claiming they were drugged without consent at a fraternity house, at 2325 Sheridan Rd. in Evanston. The university reported it is also investigating separate, similar reports at on-campus frat houses.

The university did not name the fraternities, but a Daily Northwestern report identified them as the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity at the Sheridan Road address, and the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity at 584 Lincoln St.

There was one report of drugging at Sigma Alpha Epsilon on Friday night, and several at the Alpha Epsilon Pi house after a Friday night gathering.

Students fear there could be even more incidents than the ones reported.

"I definitely think that it's happening, and I think there's a lot of voices that aren't being heard also," one student said.

The university noted that its on-campus fraternity and sorority houses are alcohol-free by policy, and there are concerns about community health and safety. Thus, Northwestern has decided effective immediately, there will be no more social events or chapter-sponsored recruitment activities at Northwestern fraternities in the Intrafraternity Council until at least Oct. 17 - the Sunday after the university's homecoming week events.

This order applies to non-fraternity members and alumni. Anyone who violates the orders will be referred to the university's Office of Community Standards, the university said.

The university reported it has also been in communication with Intrafraternity Council leadership, which on Saturday passed a resolution concurring with the ban on social activities.

But that was not enough for the students demanding the abolition of Greek life altogether.

Northwestern students dressed all in black Sunday night and chanted, "Greek life has got to go!" Their anger was palpable as they protested out of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon house.

It comes after past accusations at the ΣAE house – involving women who claimed to be drugged at a party in 2017.

The fraternity was suspended around the same time until 2018, after probation over what school administrators said were members serving alcohol to minors.

Frustrated students are hoping this time, change can happen after what they called issues with Greek life across the county.

"We need to abolish them. It starts with Northwestern, but it doesn't end there," a student said. "There are colleges and universities across the country that have systems in place like this, and it's causing a lot of harm – unnecessary harm."

Jon Pierce, a past international president and current media spokesman for Alpha Epsilon Pi International, released the following statement:

"Alpha Epsilon Pi is horrified by these stories and our members are cooperating fully with the University's investigation in order to find the responsible individuals. If proven guilty, those perpetrators should be punished to the fullest extent of the law."

Anyone with information about the claims of drugging is asked to call Northwestern University Police right away at (847) 491-3456.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.