Fairmont State University recognizes the importance of “Service Animals” as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) and the broader category of “Assistance Animals” under the Fair Housing Act that provide physical and/or emotional support to individuals with disabilities. Fairmont State University is committed to allowing individuals with disabilities the use of a Service Animal on campus to facilitate their full-participation and equal access to the University’s programs and activities. Fairmont State University is also committed to allowing Assistance Animals necessary to provide individuals with disabilities an equal opportunity to use and enjoy University housing. This Policy explains the specific requirements applicable to an individual’s use of an Assistance Animal in University housing. Fairmont State University reserves the right to amend this Policy as circumstances require. This policy applies solely to “Assistance Animals” which may be necessary in University housing. It does not apply to “Service Animals” as defined by the ADAAA.
Although it is the policy of Fairmont State University that individuals are generally prohibited from having animals of any type except fish in University housing, Fairmont State University will consider a request by an individual with a disability for reasonable accommodation from this prohibition to allow an Assistance Animal that is necessary because of a disability and reasonable. However, no Assistance Animal may be kept in University housing at any time prior to the individual receiving approval as a reasonable accommodation pursuant to this Policy.
A resident wishing to request an Assistance Animal should contact the Office of Accessibility Services. The Office of Accessibility Services may require a statement from a reliable third party indicating that the resident has a disability and that the animal would provide emotional support or other assistance that would ameliorate one or more symptoms or effects of the disability. A “reliable third party” is someone who is familiar with the individual’s disability and the necessity for the requested accommodation. A reliable thirdparty includes, but is not limited to someone who provides medical care, therapy or counseling to persons with disabilities, including, but not limited to, doctors, physician assistants, psychiatrists, psychologists, or social workers.