Complaint Procedures

It is Niagara University's policy to ensure that no qualified student with a disability is denied the benefits of, excluded from participation in, or otherwise subjected to discrimination by any university program or activity.
If a student believes he/she has been denied equal access to the university's academic programs, resources or other services because of a disability, he/she has the right to file either an informal complaint or a formal complaint. Please see information below.

Note that if a student with a complaint alleging disability discrimination is also employed by the university and the complaint arises out of the student's employment, the complaint may be filed under the university's "Policy Against Sexual & Other Forms of Harassment, Discrimination and Retaliation," (No. P-19). For more information, please contact the Office of Human Resources at 716.286.8690.

The university always encourages students to enlist the aid and intervention of the coordinator of Accessibility Services in order to resolve complaints informally. The coordinator will make every effort to resolve the disagreement, first with any appropriate faculty or staff person, then with the academic or administrative department head, or, if needed, with the dean of the student's college or the dean of student affairs, as is appropriate.

If informal procedures do not satisfactorily address the student's concerns or the complaint arises out of a decision made by the coordinator of disability services regarding a student's eligibility for academic or other accommodations, he/she may file a formal complaint. The student must provide the following information in writing to Niagara University's director of human resources:

  • Student's name, address, phone number, email address, and student number;
  • Information about the alleged discrimination including a specific description regarding the action(s) or inaction(s) that precipitated the complaint as well as the date, place, and names of the persons involved;
  • Efforts made to settle the matter informally;
  • Any documentation that supports the complaint;
  • Remedy sought

The ADA coordinator will conduct an investigation of the complaint and will furnish a written response to the complaint no later than 15 academic days after receiving the written complaint from the student. The written response shall be mailed to the student by certified mail, return receipt requested.

If the student is not satisfied with the written response from the ADA coordinator, he/she may present the complaint in written form to the Executive Vice-President within 10 academic days after the receipt of the ADA coordinator's written response.

The executive vice president or designee shall, within 15 academic days after the receipt of the complaint, schedule and conduct a meeting with the student and other persons involved in the complaint.

After the investigation is complete, the vice president or designee shall issue a written response to the student/complainant within 15 academic days from completion of the meeting(s) with the student and other persons involved in the complaint. This is the final institutional level of appeal.

The right to prompt and equitable resolution of a complaint shall not be impaired by the student's pursuit of the remedies such as filing a complaint with the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario. Although individuals have the right to pursue appeals through external channels, students are encouraged to first utilize the university's internal mechanism to resolve disagreements.