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Service and Support Animals

Category: Operations
Number: OPS-160-005
Audience: All University Employees, Students, and Visitors
Issued: June 19, 2019
Revised: June 19, 2019
Owner(s): AVP (Student Affairs)
Approved by: President and Vice-Chancellor
Contact: Manager, Centre for Student Accessibility - 306-585-4631

Introduction

The University of Regina strives to be welcoming and accessible to all members of the community who seek to enjoy our services and facilities. The primary purpose of this policy is to support individuals with disabilities who require the use of a service animal or a support animal, (each an “Assistive Animal”), while on University property.

The right to use an assistive animal must be balanced with laws and regulations governing public health and safety as well as other restrictions in certain circumstances.

This policy provides definitions, requirements and guidance regarding the use of assistive animals on University property.

Policy

The University welcomes and supports individuals with disabilities who use a Service Animal and will not unreasonably deny those individuals access to programs, services and facilities of the University. In addition, only under limited conditions and subject to restrictions, the University may permit an individual with a documented disability to have a Support Animal within University housing.

Animals that are not acting as Assistive Animals and are intended for use in teaching or research activities, or any other events, are governed by the Care and Use of Animals policy .

Subject to reasonable limitations, a Service Animal may accompany an individual with a disability throughout campus, such as in classrooms and recreational facilities. A Support Animal is typically expected to provide at-home support.

An Assistive Animal should be identifiable to others through a visible signifier (e.g. vest or harness). Individuals with a disability who require a Service Animal in the classroom must contact the Centre for Student Accessibility (CSA) for assistance with accommodations.

Assistive Animals may be restricted from certain areas of campus where considerations of health and safety, safety of the individual with a disability or of the Assistive Animal, or research integrity must take precedence. These include, but are not limited to:

  • research laboratories where contamination caused by the presence of an animal, or risk of contamination of an animal, may be present;
  • mechanical and custodial rooms;
  • medical treatment areas;
  • areas posing danger/hazards to animals; and
  • food preparation areas where public safety regulations prohibit the presence of animals.

Restricted areas will be identified by the unit/department responsible for controlling access to the area. Where restrictions are necessary, accommodations through other reasonable means (other than the use of the Assistive Animal) will be determined on a case-by-case basis. For more information, University employees are welcome to contact the Centre for Student Accessibility in cases involving students or the Office of Human Resources (Health, Safety and Wellness) in cases involving employees, visitors, or other non-students.

Roles and Responsibilities

All Members of the University Community

  • Will ensure individuals with disabilities who are using Assistive Animals are not discriminated against;
  • Will allow a Service Animal to accompany a person with disabilities on campus, except where safety and/or research restrictions apply (as outlined above);
  • Will not ask for details about a person's disabilities;
  • Will not pet, interact with, or feed a Service Animal, as it distracts the animal from its work;
  • Will not deliberately startle, tease, or taunt a Service Animal;
  • Will not separate or attempt to separate a person from his/her Service Animal; and
  • Will provide individuals with Service Animals with the right of way with respect to pedestrians or other personal transit methods (bike, skateboard, etc.).

University Employees with administrative responsibilities for space

If there is a question whether an animal is a pet or an Assistive Animal, employees who are responsible for a building/area may ask the following questions, before allowing access:

  • Is this animal required because of a disability?
    (NOTE: It is not appropriate to ask about the nature of the disability)
  • What work or task is this animal trained to perform?
  • If the response to these questions is “no” or “none”, the animal may be denied access to the area.
  • The above inquiries should not be made when it is readily apparent that a Service Animal is trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability, for example, when a service dog is observed wearing a vest/harness and guiding an individual who is blind or has low vision, or providing assistance with stability or balance to an individual with an observable mobility disability.
  • Employees may not inquire about the nature or extent of the individual's disability before allowing use of the Service Animal on campus.

Handler of an Assistive Animal

  • Must maintain control of the Assistive Animal, ensuring the animal is appropriately restrained by harness, carrier, or leash at all times;
  • Will ensure that the Assistive Animal is housebroken; the handler is responsible for prompt clean-up and disposal of all animal waste in an outdoor waste receptacle;
  • Will ensure the Assistive Animal is clean, free of fleas and ticks, in good health, vaccinated and licensed through the City of Regina ( Animal Bylaw No. 2009-44 ) and wears a license tag at all times;
  • Will ensure the Assistive Animal is non-disruptive and does not pose a threat to the health or safety of others; and
  • Is solely responsible for the cost of repairing or replacing any property damaged by the Assistive Animal.

Note:

  • Assistive Animals receive extensive and costly training due to the highly specialized disability-related functions they perform. Any individual who interferes with a specialized Assistive Animal may be placing another person in danger and may be responsible for the cost of replacing the animal if it has to be retired.

  • Individuals using Assistive Animals are responsible for the actions of the animal. Situations where an Assistive Animal causes disruption to the campus community or causes property damage or personal injury will be regarded the same as if the owner/handler had directly engaged in the behavior themselves.  In such circumstances, the individual may be subject to discipline for non-academic misconduct.

Consequences for Noncompliance

Assistive Animals may be restricted from University property, including University housing, and may be excluded or removed, at the discretion of the University, including when:
  • The Assistive Animal is out of control and its handler does not take effective action to control it; 
  • The Assistive Animal is not housebroken;
  • The Assistive Animal’s handler is mistreating or neglecting the animal; or
  • The Assistive Animal poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others. Each situation will be considered individually, as a threat may include a variety of animal behaviours (i.e. lunging, biting).

If an Assistive Animal is restricted/excluded from an area for one of these reasons, the employee with administrative responsibility for the area shall give the individual with a disability the opportunity to obtain goods, services, and accommodations without having the Assistive Animal on the premises, if reasonably possible. Assistance with other reasonable means of accommodation may be obtained through the Centre for Student Accessibility in the case of a student, or from the Office of Human Resources (Health, Safety and Wellness) in the case of an employee, visitor, or other non-student.

Any employee or student who fails to comply with this policy will be subject to disciplinary action.

Processes

Application for Assistive Animals in University Housing

  1. Register with the Centre for Student Accessibility
  2. Complete the Assistive Animal Accommodation Request Form
  3. Note: Due to the building configuration of campus housing units, a limited number of spaces are available and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis

Use of Assistive Animals by Students on Campus

  1. Register with the Centre for Student Accessibility

Application for Assistive Animals by University Employees

  1. Please refer to EMP-080-005 Workplace Accommodation for Employees with Medical Disabilities

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