Greek houses at IU continue efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19

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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Student leaders in the Greek houses at Indiana University are taking action to slow the spread where they live to the point the Monroe County Health Department is going as far as calling them proactive. 

This comes as IU officials recommended Thursday that all Greek-life houses shut down due to increased spread of COVID-19. While the university can’t order the houses to close because they are owned by their respective organizations, they can advise students to re-evaluate living in the houses.

“I think that the corporations and the national directors need to step up and think about how they’re going to help the students and their families move. They could figure out to make their houses significantly safer,” IU’s Provost Lauren Robel said Thursday.

IU’s Interfraternity Council’s VP of Risk Management says they don’t agree with the recommendations, saying they already had a plan of action in place for when cases arose.

On Friday, the administrator of the Monroe County Health Department said it is continuing to work with the Greek houses and feels like they are responding proactively and want additional guidance. The COVID-19 response unit at IU has been working with each chapter and the national organizations to give students guidance.

Meanwhile, the mayor of Bloomington is concerned about the positivity rates and is now looking for ways the city can help. 

“I think the challenge for the community is making sure we’re doing everything we can to identify and isolate those individuals, Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton said. “If they’re going to be leaving the Greek house, where are they going?”

Monroe County is providing disposable masks for students who live in a fraternity or sorority. IU is also ramping up testing now that classes are in full swing.

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