Policy and Legal Rights

It is the policy of St. Joseph's University, New York not to discriminate on the basis of disability in its academic programs, admissions policies, employment opportunities, financial aid or other school administered programs. This policy is implemented in compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and other applicable federal and state statutes.

Students with documented disabilities may request modifications, accommodations, or auxiliary aids which will enable them to participate in and benefit from all post-secondary educational programs and activities.  


There are two laws that protect persons with disabilities in post-secondary education: The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (Pub. L. No. 93 –112, as amended) and the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act (Pub. L. No. 1001-336).

The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 Title V of The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is generally regarded as the first civil rights legislation on the national level for people with disabilities. Section 504 of The Rehabilitation Act is a program access statute. It prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability in any program or activity offered by an entity or institution receiving federal funds. Section 504 states (as amended): No otherwise qualified person with a disability in the United States… shall, solely on the basis of disability, be denied access to, or the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity provided by any institution receiving Federal financial assistance.

The ADA is a federal civil rights statute that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities. There are four sections of the law: employment, government, public accommodations and telecommunications. The ADA provides additional protection for persons with disabilities in conjunction with The Rehabilitation Act of 1973. The ADA is designed to remove barriers, which prevent qualified individuals with disabilities from enjoying the same opportunities that are available to persons without disabilities. Post-secondary institutions are covered in many ways under the ADA.


The Family Educational Rights Privacy Act (FERPA) regulates disclosure of disability documentation. Under this federal act, prior written consent by the student is required before Student Accessibility Services releases disability documentation or records.  St. Joseph's University students are protected from discrimination under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and confidential treatment of disability related information is observed.