In response to the thousands of emails Miami-Dade County officials received asking for the Board of County Commissioners, and Miami-Dade Animal Services to implement the lifesaving programs and services of the No Kill Equation, Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez stated:
"...I recognize the need to save more dogs and cats. This can only be accomplished by increasing our adoptions, rescues and fosters through many of the programs referenced in your correspondence."
"No Kill Nation (NKN) had already reached out to Miami-Dade County Commissioner Jose "Pepe" Diaz, who serves as the Chairman of the Public Safety and Health Care Committee (PSHC). PSHC is the committee of jurisdiction over the Animal Services Department (ASD). Commissioner Diaz is working with NKN to review and consider policies and legislation that would assist ASD in increasing the save rate at the shelter. This includes the creation of new programs and the expansion of existing efforts..."
"I have instructed ASD Director Alex Munoz to look at programs that would save more animals and to look at other cities where similar efforts have been undertaken. Mr. Munoz has already met with groups and individuals that have implemented or are in the process of implementing no kill policies. He will continue to work with Commissioner Diaz on this initiative and has made it a priority to reach out to NKN."
Sadly, this did not happen as promised. The honeymoon is over. Rather than implement No Kill policies and legislation as directed, Alex Munoz mislead and misrepresented NKN, and gutted the legislation that NKN submitted.
While we acted in good faith, and believed that our proposed legislation was being introduced, without our knowledge or input, it was drastically changed, and a bastardized version that does nothing more than maintain the status quo was put forward instead.
We do not support the current legislation, or the title of the bill, the Miami-Dade County "Companion Animal Protection Act." The Companion Animal Protection Act (CAPA) is model No Kill legislation. By gutting our proposed legislation, Miami-Dade Animal Services is attempting to hijack a title that is synonymous with No Kill in an attempt to mislead the public into believing that we support the bill, and that it is based on No Kill policies and programs.
Please sign this petition and demand that the current legislation be rewritten in good faith and in accordance with No Kill policies as promised.
We Want Real Change, Not A Continuation of Failed Policies and Programs!
I am writing to you to reject the Miami-Dade “Companion Animal Protection Act” and rewrite it in good faith. As written, it is just a continuation of the status quo at MDAS and the legislation, as corrupted by Mr. Munoz, will do nothing to change that. In fact, it is specifically designed to give the appearance of change, while simply codifying the discretion that MDAS has always had.
Mandatory provisions that required MDAS to implement lifesaving that were in the original proposed legislation were changed to discretionary provisions that give MDAS sole discretion to determine whether it will or won’t save animals. Other requirements were gutted and replaced with unenforceable considerations that leave animals to the mercy of those in power.
We want real change. That is what we were promised. We do not want a bill that will do nothing more than grant MDAS directors the discretion they have enjoyed for years to the detriment of the animals—a discretion which has resulted in the killing of tens of thousands of animals every year in Miami-Dade County.
As currently drafted, this legislation does nothing more than codify current policies and practices, creates loopholes that simply maintain the status quo that already exists at the shelter, bastardizes the legislation intended, misleads the public as to its true nature, and undermines the movement’s faith in shelter reform.
We were promised, by Mayor Gimenez, No Kill policies. Mr. Munoz, instead, gutted proposed legislation submitted by No Kill Nation that was actually based on successful and proven No Kill policies, replacing it with language simply codifying failed policies and practices that already exist.
This underhanded move, and the hijacking of the name "Companion Animal Protection Act," can only be characterized as an attempt to mislead the public and misrepresent No Kill Nation.
Please withdraw the legislation and rewrite it according to the best practices of No Kill communities across the country saving at least 90% of all animals in their open-admission shelters. Please do what was promised!