Handling Disputes

Handling Disputes

This dispute-resolution plan shall be used for all disputes involving students receiving services through the Center for Accommodative Services. For the purpose of this plan, a grievance is an action that may be taken by any student who feels he/she has been injured by a college faculty member, administrator or other person acting on behalf of the college, and that the injury was a result of:

  1. Discrimination or harassment on the basis of handicap.
  2. A violation, misinterpretation or inequitable application of the provisions of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

PLEASE NOTE: Actions pertaining to discrimination or harassment on the basis of sex, race, color, age, religion, national origin, handicap or marital status may be filed through the grievance procedure outlined in Appendix II, Student Handbook of Paul Smith’s College of Arts and Sciences. Appendix II, “Student Grievance and Appeal Procedure.” Section I defines the following words: – grievance – executive officer – grievant – respondent – party in interest – hearing officer – working day(s) – witness – representative- hearing-mediator – affirmative action officer – Affirmative Action Committee.

Stage 1 – Informal

A student having a grievance consults with the Coordinator of  Accommodative Services. The Coordinator will document details of the dispute and take whatever steps deemed appropriate to achieve an informal resolution of the problem. If necessary, The Coordinator will set a meeting with the student and the person (or those people) with whom the disagreement lies. If the dispute is in regards to decisions made, or services provided by Accommodative Services, then the student should consult with the Dean of Students.

Stage 2 - Formal

If the dispute is not resolved informally, it shall be put in writing and presented to the Dean of Students or to the Provost if the Dean of Students documented the informal grievance outlined in Stage 1. Written copies of the dispute will then be given to the Provost or the Affirmative Action Officer. Upon receipt of the above information, those officials shall request any documents or other information that they believe are relevant to their position on the action being disputed and shall confer to name a representative (if any). Within fifteen (15) working days after the written grievance is presented to them, the official(s) shall render a decision in writing  and present it to the student, or her/his representative.

Stage 3 – Appeal

If either party is not satisfied with the written decision at the conclusion of Stage 2 and wishes to proceed further, a hearing will be scheduled by the Affirmative Action Officer who will designate the hearing officer.

Affirmative Action Officer

Coordinating Officer – Section 504/ADA Compliance    

Stage 4 - Final
Contact the Office of Civil Rights (OCR) or NYS Division of Human Rights. If either party is not satisfied with the written advisory opinion of the Committee at the conclusion of Stage 3, and wishes to proceed further, the student may file a complaint with the New York State, Region II, Office of Civil Rights (OCR) at: U.S. Department of Education Washington, D.C. 20202-1100 PHONE: (800) 421-3481 TDD: (877) 521-2172 Email: ocr@ed.gov Or New York State Division of Human Rights NYS Division of Human Rights Agency Agency Building 1, 2nd Floor Empire State Plaza Albany, NY 12220 Telephone No. (518) 474-2705 or (518) 474-2707 Email: infoalbany@dhr.ny.gov

Individuals have the right to file a complaint with Housing and Urban Development (HUD) within one year after the alleged denial of an emotional support animal (ESA) or may file a lawsuit in federal district court within two years of the alleged denial. If a complaint is filed with HUD, HUD will investigate the complaint at no cost to the person with a disability.  There are several ways that a person may file a complaint with HUD:

Contact Us »

Center for Accommodative Services
Joan Weill Adirondack Library, Room 207
Paul Smith’s College
7833 State Route 30 | PO Box 265
Paul Smiths, NY 12970

Vanessa Case, M.S.Ed.
(518) 327- 6415
(518) 327- 6369 fax

Hours 8:00-4:30