Requesting Reasonable Housing Accommodations
In accordance with applicable federal, state, and local disability laws, RIC will make every effort to provide reasonable housing accommodations for students who have a qualifying physical or psychological disability. Only applications that represent a qualifying disability will be considered for housing accommodations. If the committee determinesthat your application does not reflect a disabling condition that requires a reasonable housing accommodation, you will be referred back to the Office of Residential Life and Housing for your housing assignment.
Housing assignments are made based on availability. It is the student’s responsibility to submit his or her housing deposit and complete all paperwork required by the Office of Residential Life and Housing in accordance with all applicable deadlines. For more information, please see www.ric.edu/residential-life . When requesting a reasonable housing accommodation, applicants are expected to have already applied for RIC Housing and have met all eligibility requirements and payment deadlines. Please pay close attention to the deadline dates indicated in the RIC Office of Residential Life and Housing as well as the deadlines for submitting reasonable housing accommodation applications.
All accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis according to documented need and prevailing standards for reasonable accommodations. The Reasonable Housing Accommodation Committee reviews applications and approvals are sent to the Office of Residential Life and Housing which then offers assignments based on availability.
In accordance with state and federal law, it is the policy of Rhode Island College that “no otherwise qualified person with a disability…shall, solely by reason of …disability, be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity.” The Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended, defines the term “disability” to mean a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.
Major Life Activities include, but are not limited to, caring for oneself, performing manual tasks, seeing, hearing, eating, sleeping, walking, standing, lifting, bending, speaking, breathing, learning, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and working. A Major Life Activity also includes the operation of a major bodily function, including but not limited to, functions of the immune system, normal cell growth, digestive, bowel, bladder, neurological, brain, respiratory, circulatory, endocrine, and reproductive functions.
Your Request for Reasonable Housing Accommodations Application, along with supporting documentation from your healthcare provider will be reviewed by a committee consisting of representatives from the Disability Services Center, the Counseling Center, Health Services, the Office of Residential Life and Housing, and other administrators having knowledge of the accommodation process. Members of the committee include medical and counseling professionals.
You will be notified of the Committee’s decision via e-mail from the Disability Services Center. The correspondence will include a decision regarding your eligibility for each housing accommodation requested. The Office of Residential Life and Housing will notify you of your housing assignment according to the notification schedule detailed on their website. You must contact the Office of Residential Life and Housing directly at 401-456-8240 with all inquiries related to features or specifications of the housing assignment that is offered to you. The Disability Services Center is unable to provide specific information regarding buildings and rooms managed by the Office of Residential Life and Housing. If you have any questions about the process for requesting reasonable housing accommodations, please contact the Disability Services Center at 401-456-2776.
Rhode Island College requires documentation from a licensed healthcare provider that describes the student’s disability and supports the request for a reasonable housing accommodation. The licensed healthcare provider must fill out Part II of the Request for Reasonable Housing Accommodations Application. The healthcare provider may also include a letter of additional support if they choose.
Documentation must be:
- Recent (within the last year of applying for housing); and
- Sufficient to establish a direct link between the underlying impairment and the requested housing accommodation.
The following documents are not considered acceptable forms of documentation if submitted alone:
- Handwritten patient records or notes from patient charts
- Diagnoses on prescription pads
- Self-evaluation found on the internet or in any print publication
- Research articles
- Original evaluation/diagnostic documents; submit copies of the original documents
- Correspondence from healthcare providers not directly addressed to the Rhode Island College Housing Accommodations Committee
- Low Occupancy
Low occupancy rooms are double room suites.
- Single Room
Single rooms are a private sleeping area within a shared suite. All upperclassmen at RIC are automatically eligible for a single room. A request for a single room for a freshman must clearly demonstrate how sharing a sleeping area adversely impacts your ability to live and perform successfully at RIC. The request should include an explanation of how typical roommate adjustments (such as using headphones, using a sleeping mask, or negotiating shared use of a space) would not resolve the concern.
- Proximity to Restroom
If closer proximity to a restroom or semi-private restroom is a critical accommodation for a student with a qualified disability, this must be reflected in the submitted documentation. There are no fully private restrooms in RIC residence halls.
- Physical Modifications
Students who may require physical modification in their living space must indicate their specific needs. Examples of modifications may include a ground level room, wheelchair accessibility and modifications for students with hearing or visual impairments.
RIC provides student furniture which meets certain space and fire safety requirements. A student with a qualified disability who wishes to bring non-RIC furnishings related to his/her special need must submit a formal request.
- Air Conditioned Room
Some residence halls do not have air-conditioning. If air conditioning is a critical accommodation for a student with a qualified disability, this must be reflected in the submitted documentation.
If no carpet is a critical accommodation for a student with a qualified disability, this must be reflected in the submitted documentation.
- Roommate requests
Please be advised that roommates may be assigned to students with disabilities who are occupying modified rooms in the same manner as other residential students. A roommate request is not considered a reasonable accommodation and cannot be evaluated by the Reasonable Housing Accommodations Committee.
- Specific Building Requests
Please do not make building specific requests but instead request the specific type of accommodation needed (i.e. building with no carpet, building with a/c , building outfitted with a flashing alarm etc.) A building-specific request is not considered a reasonable accommodation and cannot be evaluated by the Housing Accommodations Committee.
Please note that residents are subject to billing rates based on the building and type of room. Single rooms are higher in cost than most typical shared rooms on campus. Kitchen facilities, air conditioning and other amenities also affect room rates. Building location and room rates are available on the Office of Residential Life and Housing’s website. All Office of Residential Life and Housing rates apply to students with disabilities
Students should provide completed applications, including all required documentation by the deadlines indicated below:
Returning Students: March 1st for the next academic year
New Students: June 1st for the next academic year