Animals on Campus

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Policy for Guide Animals, Trained Assistance Animals, Emotional Support Animals, and Pet Animals on Campus Grounds and in Campus Facilities

 The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

(Approval and Revision Information)
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Purpose

This policy specifies the requirements for the presence of Guide Animals, Trained Assistance Animals (TAA), Emotional Support Animals (ESA) and Pet Animals at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. This policy also addresses behavioral requirements for all members of the UNCG community regarding the animals.

Scope

This policy applies to all faculty, staff, students, visitors, and guests on any property owned, leased, or managed by any entity or component of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.

Definitions

GUIDE ANIMALS are defined by the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) as a dog, and in some cases, a miniature horse, trained to assist an individual in daily navigation. By law, a guide animal is permitted to accompany an individual in any location unless a specific safety or health issue is identified by campus authorities.

TRAINED ASSISTANCE ANIMAL (TAA) is defined as an animal that is trained to do work or perform a specific task as an accommodation for an individual with a disability including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual or other mental disability. The work or tasks performed by a TAA must be directly related to the person’s disability. The provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship does not constitute work or tasks for the purpose of this definition.

EMOTIONAL SUPPORT ANIMAL (ESA) is identified as an animal providing emotional or other support to ameliorate one or more identified symptoms or effects of a disability. Unlike Guide or Trained Assistance Animals, ESA Animals are not required to be trained to perform work or tasks, and include species other than dogs and miniature horses.

ESA Animals are not automatically allowed to accompany persons with disabilities in any other public areas of UNCG other than campus housing as guide and trained assistance animals are allowed to do, but ESA Animals may reside in campus housing, when it is necessary, so the person with a disability has an equal opportunity to use and enjoy campus housing, as required under the Federal Fair Housing Act.

Before an ESA Animal can move into campus housing with a person with a disability, a request must be submitted to the Office of University Housing and Residence Life (HRL), and approval must be granted by HRL. Appropriate documentation from a licensed physician or mental health provider must be provided to the Office of Accessibility Resources and Services (OARS), from a qualified psychiatrist, social worker, or other mental health professional, to provide sufficient information for UNCG to determine:

  • the individual qualifies as a person with a disability, and has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; and
  • The ESA Animal is necessary to provide emotional support or other assistance to ameliorate one or more symptoms or effects of the disability.

Once the supporting disability documentation has been determined to support the accommodation of an ESA Animal in campus housing, the student, HRL and OARS will meet, review, and sign a Memo of Understanding detailing the responsibilities and guidelines for an ESA Animal in campus housing. The memorandum is valid for one semester at a time. If the ESA Animal is requested for additional semesters, updated documentation is required. Approval for an ESA Animal can be rescinded if the responsibilities and guidelines in the memorandum are not followed.

PET ANIMALS are any animal kept for ordinary use and companionship. Guide Animals, Trained Assistance Animals and Emotional Support Animals are not considered pets.

Pet Animals are prohibited in any University facility, except in campus housing, where only fish are permitted as Pet Animals. For more information on fish in campus housing, please refer to the UNCG Housing guidelines on Pet Animals at http://hrl.uncg.edu/living-campus/policies/.

Policy

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG) must make reasonable modifications to its rules, policies, and practices as required by law to afford people with disabilities the equal opportunity to access its programs, services and activities, and recognizes the presence on campus of Guide Animals, Trained Assistance Animals (TAA), Emotional Support Animals (ESA) and Pet Animals as appropriate.

Responsibilities of Persons with Disabilities Bringing, Guide Animals, TAA Animals, or ESA Animals on Campus
UNCG is not responsible for the care or supervision of Guide Animals, Trained Assistance Animals or ESA Animals. Persons with disabilities are responsible for the cost, care, and supervision of their animals, including:

  • Compliance with city, state, and federal laws pertaining to animal licensing, vaccination, and owner identification.
  • Control of the animal at all times.
  • All care, feeding, and exercise of the animal.
  • Appropriate disposal of waste.
    • Students living on campus should contact Housing and Residence Life for information on specific areas for toileting animals.
    • Employees with animals should contact Human Resources for information on specific areas for toileting animals.

UNCG will not require any surcharges or fees for an approved animal, but the person with an accompanying animal will be billed for any damages caused by the animal.

People with disabilities who are accompanied by Guide Animals, TAA Animals or ESA Animals must comply with all UNCG policies and guidelines.

Responsibilities of UNCG Faculty, Staff, Students, and Guests

Guide Animals and TAA animals are permitted to accompany people with disabilities in all regularly accessible areas of UNCG facilities, including University Housing. UNCG cannot require documentation, such as proof that the Guide or TAA animal has been certified, trained, or licensed as a Guide or TAA animal.

Additionally, UNCG faculty and staff cannot ask about the nature or extent of a person’s disability to determine whether a person’s animal qualifies as a TAA. If it is not apparent that the animal is a TAA, The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) has directed two inquiries may be made to determine whether the animal qualifies as a TAA, which are:

  • Is the animal required because of a disability?
  • What specific work or tasks has the animal been trained to perform?

All UNCG community members should comply with OCR guidelines:

  • Do not challenge a person’s right to have a Guide Animal or Trained Assistance Animal on campus grounds or in campus facilities.
  • Do not pet a Guide Animal or Trained Assistance Animal.
  • Do not feed a Guide Animal or Trained Assistance Animal.
  • Do not deliberately startle, tease, or taunt a Guide Animal or Trained Assistance Animal.
  • Do not separate or attempt to separate a person from his/her Guide Animal or Trained Assistance Animal.

If the presence of approved animals causes disruption or other concerns, students should contact OARS and faculty or staff should contact Human Resources to address the concerns. UNCG is committed to ensuring that the needs of all individuals on campus are met.

Exceptions and Exclusions

Any animal may be excluded from an area in which it was previously authorized to be if:

  • It is out of control or disruptive, and effective action is not taken to control it;
  • OARS will determine if a student’s animal and Human Resources will determine if an employee’s animal is disruptive through reasonable judgement, current medical knowledge or the best available evidence, and review of the concerns to determine:
  • the impact of the animal’s behavior
  • the probability that potential injury will actually occur
  • whether reasonable modifications of policies, practices, procedures, or the provision of auxiliary aids or services, will mitigate the risk

OARS/Human Resources will provide a written statement of explanation to the person with a disability if a determination is made the animal is out of control or disruptive.

  • It is not housebroken (or in the case of an ESA Animal that deposits waste in a designated cage or litter box, the owner fails to clean such cage or box such that the cleanliness of the room is not maintained);
  • It poses a direct threat to the health and safety of others that cannot be mitigated by reasonable modifications of policies, practices, or procedures, or the provision of auxiliary aids or services.
  • UNCG Police will respond to any situation involving a direct threat to the health and safety of others, and written notice will be provided to the person with the disability if the animal poses a direct threat, as determined by the UNCG Police.

The Director of Environmental Health and Safety, in consultation with the Office of Accessibility Resources and Services, the ADA Compliance Officer, and/or Police and Public Safety, will provide the final determination on the risk, potential hazard, potential for property damage, or potential for public nuisance of any animal on campus grounds. Nothing in this Policy is intended to limit the freedom of the Director of Environmental Health and Safety, and Security or Police and Public Safety in the assessment or handling of any situation involving an animal in University facilities or on the University campus.

In the event that restriction or removal of an animal is determined to be necessary, the person with a disability will have the opportunity to participate in the service, program, or activity without the animal.

GETTING HELP

Students

 
bringing a Trained Assistance Animal or Emotional Support Animal to campus. Office of Accessibility Resources and Services
215 Elliott University Center
336-334-5440.   oars.uncg.edu
requesting to bring an Emotional Support Animal to University Housing. Housing and Residence Life Office
Ragsdale / Mendenhall Residence Hall
336-334-4222.   hrl@uncg.edu
reporting an animal in University Housing that is disruptive, out of control, or poses a threat to safety. Housing and Residence Life Office
Ragsdale / Mendenhall Residence Hall
336-334-4222. hrl@uncg.edu
reporting any animal elsewhere on campus that is disruptive, out of control, or poses a threat to safety. UNCG Police Department, 1200 W Lee Street
336-334-5963. police@uncg.edu
reporting a concern about disability discrimination or harassment. Office of Accessibility Resources and Services
215 Elliott University Center
336-334-5440. oars.uncg.edu

Faculty/Staff

 
bringing a Trained Assistance Animal or Emotional Support Animal to campus. UNCG Human Resources, 159 Mossman
336-334-6170.
reporting an animal in University Housing that is disruptive, out of control, or poses a threat to safety. Housing and Residence Life Office
Ragsdale / Mendenhall Residence Hall
336-334-4222.   hrl@uncg.edu
reporting any animal elsewhere on campus that is disruptive, out of control, or poses a threat to safety. UNCG Police Department
336-334-5963.   police@uncg.edu
reporting a concern about disability discrimination or harassment. UNCG Human Resources, 159 Mossman
336-334-5009.

 

Enforcement

General Counsel and the Office of Accessibility Resources and Services, in cooperation with other University authorities will enforce this policy.

Any violation of this policy by a University student is subject to the Student Code of Conduct in the student handbook. For employees, any violation of this policy is “misconduct” under EPA policies (faculty and EPA non-faculty) and “unacceptable personal conduct” under SPA policies, including any appeal rights stated therein.

Employees and students are required to cooperate in investigations of any alleged violations of the policy. Violations of law may also be referred for criminal or civil prosecution.

Review

The Office of Accessibility Resources and Services and Administration will review this policy every five years or more often if required to ensure compliance with federal law.

Links to External Sources

Contact

Comments or questions? Email the Office of Accessibility, Resources and Services, or Human Resources.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Final 8/5/2015