The suspension was one of a list of six sanctions the Office of Greek Life recommended be handed down to the chapter after it was alleged to have been hazing its pledges.
Being placed on suspension means the chapter will no longer be recognized by Auburn University for a period of six to 36 months.
Outgoing chapter president Josh Murphy said he plans to appeal the sanctions.
“I feel like the punishment was extremely severe,” Murphy said.
The fraternity was found to have been subjecting pledges to verbal harassment, requiring pledges to perform errands or chores and conducting interrogations.
If the fraternity is able to comply with the committee’s list of six sanctions, University recognition of the chapter will be reinstated. However, the chapter will remain under disciplinary probation for a period of 36 months minus the amount of time it takes the chapter to comply with the sanctions. This means if the fraternity complies with the sanctions within six months, it will be on probation for 30 months.
“The chapter would simply halt in its patterns today, it would just sort of go into a state of non-activity,” said Paul Kittle, director of Greek Life, before the vote. “The only activity they would do is work with the international fraternity and the alumni and work to address all the points that are listed above.”
In addition to suspension, the committee is also requiring the chapter to initiate all new members who are eligible, undergo a member review with the FarmHouse International Fraternity, revise its new member education program and provide a framework for growth of the local advisory board.
These sanctions come in addition to six sanctions that were handed down by the Interfraternity Council Nov. 17.
The committee discussed the issue for almost an hour before voting whether the sanctions would be applied to the fraternity. The vote was 6-5 with no amendments suggested to the sanctions.
Murphy said he was unaware hazing was happening. He said the allegations stemmed from a few isolated incidences, and that they were not accurate representations of FarmHouse.
Three sophomore brothers who had been involved in hazing pledges were expelled from the fraternity.
During the hearing Murphy contested some of the allegations had been misconstrued as acts that are considered hazing when they weren’t.
The superior quality of FarmHouse was mentioned several times during the hearing by those hoping to save the chapter from suspension, despite this being the third time in five years FarmHouse has been accused of physically hazing pledges.
“We’ll concede all the accolades to the chapter 100 percent,” Kittle said. “Hands down, they’re a darn good chapter. What I’d like to show is which one of those accolades gives them the right to haze Auburn students.”
Kittle disagreed with those present during the hearing who seemed more interested in keeping FarmHouse from being suspended than preventing hazing.
“I just find it interesting that what I said at the beginning doesn’t seem to have been heard, is that my goal is that we have FarmHouse on this campus,” Kittle said. “And we’re talking about the safety of students, and yet the students are talking about protecting the fraternity.”
Although suspension will keep the chapter from hosting social events of recruiting new members until it complies with the sanctions, Murphy said he is optimistic.
“Everything happens for a reason,” Murphy said. "I have a lot of confidence in our brotherhood, and I know we’ll be able to bounce back from this and become stronger from it.”