SigEp adopts no-alcohol policy – Yale Daily News (blog)

Anvay Tewari

All chapters of the national fraternity Sigma Phi Epsilon, including the one at Yale, will be prohibited from having alcohol in their common spaces starting Aug. 1, 2018 and will be required to have completely substance-free houses by Aug. 1, 2020, in accordance with a new policy established last summer.

According to a post on the SigEp national organization’s website, the policy comes in response to almost 50 SigEp chapters closing down due to “risky behavior fueled by alcohol consumption” in the past 10 years and a 46 percent increase in liability insurance premiums for the fraternity since 2014. The resolution was drafted by Connor Hoffman, a member of SigEp’s Montana State University chapter, and approved at the fraternity’s Grand Chapter Conclave by a legislative body of assembled delegates, 83 percent of whom were undergraduates.

“SigEp chapters will each create a personalized schedule for implementation,” said SigEp’s Strategic Communications Director Andrew Parrish. “The national fraternity will support chapters with education and resources, direct support from traveling staff and training at regional leadership events.”

The president of Yale’s SigEp chapter did not respond to multiple emails and phone calls requesting a comment. One member of the fraternity, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, questioned whether SigEp’s national office will actually be able to enforce the policy. He added that alcohol will probably continue to play a role at parties “for good or bad.”

At the moment, 70 of 221 total SigEp chapters nationwide have policies to maintain substance-free facilities. Heather Matthews Kirk, the chief communications officer of the North American Interfraternity Conference, told the News that several international and national fraternities mandate substance-free housing and others allow for new chapters to adopt the practice.

It is significant that undergraduate members of SigEp played a leading role in the

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