Assistance Animals on campus: Procedures
Where evidence is required, a staff member must follow the following procedures:
- A staff member should ask the person who is accompanied by the animal whether their animal is an assistance animal. If the person does not use this description, the meaning should be explained.
- Even if the person has no form of documentary evidence, they may still be able to demonstrate that the animal is trained and responds to their commands. The person in control of an assistance animal should be able to demonstrate that they can keep the animal under control, or that another person who is also present can keep the animal under control on their behalf.
- A staff member should be respectful in seeking evidence. For example, it would be acceptable to ask “Would you tell me how the animal is trained to assist you?” However, it would not be appropriate to ask for details of the person’s disability.
- It would also be appropriate to inform the person that it is their responsibility to ensure that the animal meets appropriate standards of hygiene and behaviour while at the University.
There is no standard system of accreditation for assistance animals which applies throughout Australia. No specific animal training organisations have been prescribed for the purposes of the DDA. However, there are a number of assistance animal training organisations which use a variety of identification methods and materials. Some Australian states have certification or accreditation processes in place for assistance dogs, while others allow assistance animals to accompany their handlers on public transport.
The following types of documents and materials constitute acceptable evidence that an animal is an assistance animal.
Animal training organisations:
- Guide Dogs Australia (harness/medallion)
- Assistance Animals Australia (blue jacket)
- Lions Club Hearing Dogs (orange lead/collar/coat)
- Righteous Pups Australia (green coat)
State/territory certification or accreditation of assistance animals:
- Queensland: Certification under Guide, Hearing and Assistance Dogs Act 2009
- South Australia” accreditation as a disability dog, guide dog or hearing dog under the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995
State/territory public transport access passes:
- Victoria: Assistance Animal Pass
- New South Wales: Assistance Animal Permit
Refusing entry to persons accompanied by animals
It is lawful to refuse access to University grounds and buildings to a person who is accompanied by an animal if:
- No evidence is provided by the person seeking entry with the animal, when requested, which shows that it is an assistance animal or is trained to meet standards of hygiene and behaviour acceptable in a public space;
- The animal is suspected of having an infectious disease; or
- The animal shows signs of endangering people’s health, or the health of other animals.