Animals on Campus (Procedure 6.0220)
|Authority:||Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act; Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as amended; 28 CFR Parts 35, 36; F.S. 413.08; 1001.64; 1007.264; FAC 6A-10.041, College Policy 1.075|
|Date of Review:||10/2015; 12/2021|
The purpose of this procedure is to define guidelines for the limited presence of animals on campus. Seminole State College protects the health and safety of students, employees, community partners, and visitors by limiting domesticated animals on campus to circumstances where their presence furthers the interests of the College. The College may authorize the presence of animals for educational purposes, compliance with statutory requirements, and other activities approved by the College.
Service Animal: A service animal is a dog, miniature horse, or other animal as authorized in State or federal law.
Tasks performed by a service animal: A service animal is trained to perform assistive tasks for an individual with a disability. These tasks may include guiding a person who is visually impaired or blind, alerting a person who is deaf or hard of hearing, pulling a wheelchair, assisting with mobility or balance, alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure or blood sugar issue, retrieving objects, or performing other assistive tasks related to an individual’s disability.
Coordinating Office: Campus Safety and Security serves as the final authorization point for animal presence on campus as defined in this Procedure. Disability Support Services coordinates matters relating to the regular presence of service animals handled by students. Equity and Diversity/Title IX coordinates matters relating to the regular presence of service animals handled by employees or visitors. Each is considered a “Coordinating Office” for those assigned purposes.
Handler: For the purpose of this Procedure, the handler is the individual who possesses or controls the animal. This includes the individual with a disability who is assisted by the service animal or the individual who is training the service animal on campus.
Service Animals in Training: A service animal in training has the same rights and privileges with respect to access to public facilities as a service animal. The handler of a service animal in training has the same responsibilities for the animal, and the same liability for damage, as the handler of a service animal. The College will determine whether an animal meets the definition of a service animal in training within this procedure.
Other Animals: Animals not meeting the definition of a service animal as outlined in this Procedure generally are not permitted on College property or at College events. This includes “support” or therapy animals (animals that reassure an individual but are not trained to perform assistive tasks). Campus Safety and Security serves as the final authorization point for this determination.
Campus: College-owned property or a location controlled by the College for an event.
The College reserves the right to establish conditions for the presence of domesticated animals through application of policy, procedure, student code of conduct, and applicable laws.
- Use of Animals in the Curriculum
Academic Affairs (through designees) may approve requests for non-service animals for purposes related to the curriculum. Such animals must not infringe on the health and safety of the College community. General descriptions of approvals will be transmitted to Campus Safety and Security.
- Service Animals
Individuals with disabilities may be accompanied by service animals on campus without providing prior notice. The College is committed to providing reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities and fulfilling its responsibilities under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act (ADAAA), and Florida Statute 413.08.
- Campus Safety and Security will determine whether an animal meets the definition of a service animal within this Procedure. They may ask the handler if the animal serves as an accommodation to a disability and what task(s) the animal is trained to perform, then decide if it is authorized.
- There may be rare occasions where an animal, including a service animal, will be restricted from campus due to health and safety concerns. Restricted locations may include, but are not limited to, medical areas; areas where the presence of the animal would compromise the safety of students or the integrity of the learning. Questions about restrictions must be addressed to Campus Safety and Security.
- When the College has notice of a service animal accompanying a handler to a restricted area, the College may discuss other reasonable accommodations. That may include another method of service delivery, or attendance without the animal.
- The handler has full responsibility and liability for the behavior of the service animal. The handler is responsible for any damage that the service animal may cause.
- The handler has full responsibility and liability for the care and supervision of the service animal. The service animal must be under the control of the handler at all times, such as tethered, in harness, or on leash. When physical control is not possible, such as when a handler’s disability interferes with it, voice control or signaling is acceptable. The handler is responsible for the cleanup of all animal waste and the use of any specially designated animal toileting areas.
- The handler has full responsibility to ensure that the animal is not disruptive to any program, service, learning environment, or College activity. The College may require removal of the animal if it compromises health, safety, or a positive educational environment (with behavior that is disruptive, aggressive, unhygienic, or outside of the duties of a service animal).
- Non-service animals: advance approval requirements
- Contractors for facilities use or services on campus may include requests for such approvals in valid contracts. Contracts that provide for presence of animals should be copied to Campus Safety and Security.
- Any other requests for non-service animals on campus should be directed to Campus Safety and Security.
- Individuals with concerns about the presence, behavior, health, or handling of an animal should contact Campus Safety and Security. Directly questioning an individual with an animal is inappropriate.
- Campus Safety and Security maintains confidentiality regarding accommodations (including service animals) for specific individuals. They can discuss the theory of accommodation with observers who have a concern.
- Campus Safety and Security will take action on reports or observations leading to a reasonable belief that a handler has engaged in prohibited behaviors. That action may include investigation and possible referral to law enforcement for criminal violations. Prohibited behaviors include misrepresentation that the handler is authorized to use the service animal or is a trainer of the service animal, or interference with the use of a service animal.
- Consult with Campus Safety and Security and Legal Affairs for any alleged violations of this Procedure.
|Signed by:||President, Georgia L. Lorenz||Date||3/24/2022|