Lehigh University has decided to ban hard liquor from fraternity events on campus.
The university’s Interfraternity Council Executive Board placed an indefinite ban on hard liquor being served at any event being held by one of its fraternities. The board announced the ban on Tuesday, January 23.
According to the IFC’s statement, the ban is in response to “the alarmingly high number of alcohol-related transports over the past semester and the numerous alcohol-related incidents at colleges and universities across the country.” It’s intended to create a safer environment for students, the statement says.
Approximately 80 Lehigh students were cited for underage drinking during the first three weeks of school last semester.
The ban extends to all social events, recruitment events and anything related to new member education. Fraternities found violating the ban will face an indefinite suspension of all chapter activities at a minimum.
“Each violation will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis, and chapters may be subject to harsher sanctions including a suspension of recruitment or losing eligibility to take a new member class,” the statement says. “The IFC is taking this very seriously and these sanctions will be strictly enforced.”
Lehigh in the fall semester grappled with a jump in alcohol-related hospitalizations, injuries and arrests.
You can read the Lehigh University IFC’s full statement below:
The Lehigh University Interfraternity Council Executive Board has decided to place an indefinite ban on hard alcohol at any event sponsored by IFC fraternities. These include social events, recruitment events, and anything related to New Member Education. In light of the alarmingly high number of alcohol-related transports over the past semester and the numerous alcohol-related incidents at colleges and universities across the country, the IFC Executive Board feels that this ban is necessary in order to create a safer environment for its students.
Chapters who are found in violation of this ban will be subject to, at minimum, an indefinite suspension of all chapter activities as determined by the IFC Executive Board. Each violation will be evaluated on a case by case basis, and chapters may be subject to harsher sanctions including a suspension of recruitment or losing eligibility to take a new member class. The IFC is taking this very seriously and these sanctions will be strictly enforced.
We suggest that you have a serious discussion with your executive boards and risk management teams to re-evaluate the events that you may have planned for this semester. This self-imposed ban is an attempt to focus on the health and safety of our community members as well as regain the credibility we have lost in recent semesters. It’s on us, as a community, to create a safe environment for students while holding all members accountable. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to the members of the IFC Executive Board.