On the heels of a complaint filed with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights in May 2013 over accessibility issues on the Boston College campus, the federal and state governments are now investigating the University for potentially violating laws regarding accessibility.
The Boston Globe reported Wednesday that the Department of Education began a federal inquiry into whether BC lacks sufficient access to more than a dozen facilities on campus, and also whether the University responded adequately to disability-related grievances.
The inquiry further questions if BC has properly addressed accessibility issues related to parking and snow and ice removal.
BC is one of just 23 colleges nationally that is being investigated for similar infractions, according to the Globe. BC officials declined to comment to the Globe specifically about the inquiries, but the report indicates the University is “assisting the Department of Education and the Massachusetts Architectural Access Board in their reviews.”
Over the last several years, students have frequently vocalized their concerns about issues of accessibility on the BC campus, both advocating for the cause directly to the University and through the formation of groups such as the Disability Awareness Committee, led by Phoebe Fico, A&S ’16, and Maryan Amaral, LGSOE ’18.
Last month, the Council for Students with Disabilities with formed within the Undergraduate Government of Boston College (UGBC)’s division of diversity and inclusion—with Fico at the helm—as an advocacy group for students with physical disabilities. According to Fico, the group was created for the purpose of removing obstacles for these students in their daily lives at BC.
Featured Image by John Wiley / Heights Editor