Animals on Campus (Procedure 6.0220)

Based on Board Policy and Florida Statutes:Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act; Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA); Americans with Disabilities Amendment Act (ADAAA); F.S. 413.08; 1001.64; 1007.264; FAC 6A-10.041, College Policy 1.075
Effective Date:10/2014; 12/2015
Date of Review:10/2015

Purpose

Seminole State College protects the health and safety of students, employees, and visitors by prohibiting animals on campus. There are exceptions under limited circumstances furthering the interests of the College. The College may permit the presence of animals for educational purposes, compliance with statutory requirements, and other activities approved by the College. The purpose of this procedure is to define guidelines for the limited presence of animals on campus.

Definitions

Activities approved by the College – Individuals requesting approval of a non-service animal on campus must secure approval from Legal Affairs. This requirement may be satisfied by actions including, but not limited to, notation in a valid contract for facilities use or services on campus, approval from Disability Support Services or Equity and Diversity/Title IX, or approval by Academic Affairs.

Coordinating Office – Legal Affairs serves as the final approval 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.

Educational purposes – as determined by the College, the presence of animals in any form may be included in the curriculum.

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 uses the service animal or the individual who is training the service animal on campus.

Other Support Animals - There are “support” or therapy animals that are not service animals and will not be permitted at Seminole State College campuses or events. These include animals that reassure an individual but are not trained to perform assistive tasks. The appropriate Coordinating Office will respond to any individual’s questions about the presence of animals assisting students, employees, or visitors. No individual should confront or inquire about the authorization of an animal.

Service Animals - A service animal is a dog or miniature horse that 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. Federal law references service dogs, but Seminole State College recognizes the broader Florida statutory definition of service animals to include miniature horses. The College will determine whether an animal meets the definition of a service animal within this procedure. The Coordinating Office may ask the Handler if the animal is required as an accommodation to a disability and what task(s) the animal is trained to perform.

Service Animals in Training - A service animal in training has the same rights and privileges with respect to access to public facilities. A service animal trainer who brings a service animal to a Seminole State College campus or event has the same responsibilities for the animal, and the same liability for damage, as an individual who brings a service animal. Seminole State College will determine whether an animal meets the definition of a service animal in training within this procedure. References in this procedure to “service animals” apply to service animals in training.

Procedure

  1. General
    1. The College reserves the right to establish conditions for the presence of the animal through application of policy, procedure, student code of conduct, and applicable laws.
    2. 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 when the College practice is to charge for damage caused by an animal.
    3. 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. In addition, the Handler is responsible for the cleanup of all animal waste and must ensure compliance with any specially designated animal toileting areas.
    4. 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.
    5. The College may require the Handler to remove a service animal from campus or events if it poses a threat or is disruptive, aggressive, unhygienic, or behaving in ways outside of the duties of a service animal.
  2. Use of Animals in the Curriculum
    1. Curriculum approved through Academic Affairs may include the use of animals.
    2. Such animals must not infringe on the health and safety of the campus community.
  3. Service Animals
    1. Individuals with disabilities may be accompanied by service animals at all Seminole State College campuses or events. 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.
    2. There may be rare occasions where an animal, including a service animal, will be restricted from College facilities or activities 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; or areas where its presence is disruptive to College functions.
    3. The Coordinating Office and the Handler will discuss restricted areas when the College has notice of a service animal accompanying a Handler to such a setting. When the College implements a restriction, the Coordinating Office will discuss it with the Handler to determine other reasonable accommodations. That might include another method of service delivery, or attendance without the animal.
  4. Concerns
    1. Individuals who have concerns about the presence, behavior, health, or handling of an animal should address them to the appropriate Coordinating Office. It is inappropriate for individuals other than those in the Coordinating Office to question an individual with an animal or direct that person to contact an office. A service animal is an accommodation like a tape recorder or sign language interpreter: the College maintains confidentiality regarding approved accommodations for specific individuals but can discuss the theory of accommodation with observers who have a concern.
    2. The College will take action if a Coordinating Office forms a reasonable belief that an individual has engaged in either of the following prohibited behaviors:
      1. Misrepresentation that he or she is qualified to use the service animal or is a trainer of the service animal.
      2. Interference with the use of a service animal.
    3. The Coordinating Office may:
      1. Refer the matter for Campus Safety and Security to work with law enforcement regarding criminal penalties.
      2. Contact Student Conduct or Human Resources for education and consideration of the appropriate discipline.
Recommended byExecutive TeamDate12/2015
ApprovedPresident, E. Ann McGeeDate12/08/2015


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