RAAW REFORM ADVOCATES FOR ANIMAL WELFARE
DO NOT PENALIZE CONSTABLE BETH RICHARDSON
Constable Beth Richardson of the Durham Police force responded to a call at the home of a drug addict who was in a bad state. Officer Richardson saw a kitten cowering under a table who looked to be distressed, underfed and neglected. Fearing for the safety of the kitten, who was in the custody of a drug addict who couldn't look after herself let alone an animal, she took the kitten with her to get veterinarian help. At the time all shelters and animal organizations in the area were closed. She had no choice in the matter and chose the option which would save the kitten. The drug addict later complained that Constable Richardson had stolen her kitten which was ultimately returned to her. Due to the complaint by the drug addict, this kind officer is facing a tribunal hearing and disciplinary action for "discreditable conduct" which could mean a demotion for making a humane and compassionate choice. We are asking that all charges be dropped. You can read about it here: http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/police-officer-facing-tribunal-after-removing-kitten-from-drug-user-s-home-1.3186688
Release 21 Chatham Dogs to Temporary Sanctuary
These 21 dogs, seized from a local Tilbury dog fighting ring, have already suffered beyond comprehension. The dogs were seized almost a year ago and there have been 5 separate court delays which ultimately accomplished nothing. We have no idea how long this case may last. We ask the Ontario judiciary and decision makers involved in this case do not continue down this road of indifference Dogs are susceptible to a mental illness known as Kennelitis or "Kennel Crazy" when confined for long periods without physical and emotional enrichment. Shelters are unable to provide this necessary enrichment. A recent study on Canine Mental Health found: “Symptoms of this stress-induced canine compulsive behavior disorder can include spinning and jumping in the kennel, chewing incessantly, and jumping and pulling excessively if on a lead. Other more depression-like symptoms may include self-mutilation, lack of appetite and lethargy.” The next scheduled court date is on August 25, 2016 and we request that Motions be heard at that time to expedite this unconscionable never ending case. Each time a court date is rescheduled these dogs are subjected to further emotional and mental abuse. While the Criminal Code of Canada designates animals as property, those with a heart understand these are sentient beings. They are not cars that have been seized or a house which has defaulted on mortgage payments. They breathe, they feel, they suffer. Until such time a final decision has been made on the fate of these 21 dogs we ask they be released on a temporary basis to a place where they will not be further traumatized and punished. Dog Tales Rescue and Sanctuary in King City Ontario is a 52 acre utopia for rescued dogs and horses. They have the capacity, the resources and the willingness to take these dogs, under whatever reasonable restrictions the court may require, at no cost to OSPCA or the Province until their ultimate fate has been decided. Allowing the dogs to be temporarily housed at Dog Tales Rescue & Sanctuary will have no direct effect on the outcome of the case. The owners of the dogs have agreed to let Dog Tales house the 21 dogs. There is absolutely no justification for not allowing it. No purpose is served having them remain caged in a shelter. Every delay is additional punishment for these dogs. It is not just, it is not moral, it is not humane and it is not civilized. We need to see these dogs do not suffer any longer and can enjoy the waiting period until the case is settled in a place where they will not be further punished for the deeds of humans.
INVESTIGATE OSPCA SUDBURY
On Thursday April 28, a local Sudbury, Ontario rescuer was notified by the superintendent of an apartment building that 3 cats, 10 newborn kittens and a rabbit had been abandoned by a tenant. The rescuer immediately called the 310 SPCA emergency number. She was told that abandoned animals in an apartment are not the "problem of OSPCA they are the problem of the landlord" and "OSPCA had no authority to rescue abandoned animals". This information was later confirmed by Maureen Barclay, Animal Control Supervisor at the OSPCA head office in Newmarket, ON who claimed that due to the Landlord Tenant Act, OSPCA has no authority to enter a residence to rescue abandoned animals. The OSPCA Act trumps every other Act in Ontario when it comes to animals and they have never been stopped by the Landlord & Tenant Act. If they require a warrant in cases of emergency one is easily obtained with a call to a justice of the peace and a TeleWarrant is available within the hour. When it was clear OSPCA would not rescue the cats, kittens and rabbit, rescuers went in with the superintendent and took 2 Mother cats and 10 kittens to safety. There was one dead kitten found on the sofa surrounded by garbage. Unfortunately they had to leave one adult cat and an emaciated bunny behind but returned the next morning to get them. Tracy Lapping from the Sudbury branch of the OSPCA showed up around noon and told them they did not have the right to remove any animals. She went into the vacated apartment with the superintendent, viewed the horrific conditions of the trashed apartment, saw the one remaining cat and emaciated rabbit and left, leaving both animals behind. She instructed the superintendent that he was not to let anyone remove the remaining two animals. Yes, you read the right. This OSPCA "inspector" Tracy Lapping saw the abandoned cat and emaciated rabbit and left them there. She never returned nor did anyone else from OSPCA. Later that afternoon she subsequently contacted rescuers via email stating if anyone returns to the apartment to remove the remaining cat and rabbit, they risk being charged with obstruction under Section 11 (5) of the Ontario S.P.C.A. Act. Despite the threat, rescuers removed the cat and rabbit in the early evening. The rabbit is in very poor shape and not expected to survive. The cat is being cared for. Sudbury OSPCA won't do their job but they don't want anyone else to save animals at risk. Are the animals of Ontario simply to be ignored and allowed to suffer and die without any attempt whatsoever to help them? Exactly what is it that OSPCA does? Why do they claim to protect animals from cruelty when they inflict it themselves. This OSPCA agent blatantly ignored the condition of two abandoned and starving animals and willfully left them in distress. She did not fulfill even the most basic of her duties. Is that not cruelty as dictated in the Criminal Code of Canada and in the OSPCA Act? In January 2016, the same branch refused to step in after tenants reported a dog being beaten by its owner. When OSPCA refused to look into the complaints, local police were called. The police took the dog from its owner and held onto it for a month waiting for OSPCA to pick it up. They never did. They said because the Police Department seized the dog, the investigation was compromised and the responsibility lies with the police. The police were forced to return the dog to its abusive owner. Ironically on the OSPCA website they tell you if you suspect animal cruelty contact local police. We ask the Sudbury OSPCA be investigated and Tracy Lapping fired and charged with cruelty to animals under the OSPCA Act Obligations and Prohibitions re Care of and Harm to Animals Section 11:11.2 (1) No person shall cause an animal to be in distress. 2008, c. 16, s. 8.
RESTRUCTURE THE OSPCA ACT - PROTECT OUR ANIMALS
Once again we bring to your attention the total inability of OSPCA to protect animals The latest example took place at a farm in Grey County where hundreds of dead animals have been found scattered all over the property. Skeletons and carcasses of goats, dogs, sheep, calves and a horse have been found. Where were the OSPCA agents when these animals were suffering for the last two years? OSPCA did nothing when they were notified of the situation on two separate occasions. http://globalnews.ca/video/2582680/grisly-discovery-on-grey-county-farm-prompts-ospca-investigation When is the Liberal government going to start listening to Ontario tax payers and stop denying your Ministry is able to intercede with OSPCA. We have all heard the Liberal excuses but the fact remains the provincial Liberals and Dalton McGuinty gave OSPCA their power and they can revoke that power. If it takes a Legislative Act to do that then that is what must happen. How many more animals must die and how many more people must suffer before you pay attention. We do not want our taxes supporting the OSPCA so they can continue abusing their power while ignoring the welfare of animals. DISMANTLE OSPCA AS WE KNOW IT, REPLACE MANAGEMENT, DISMISS THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS & REWRITE THE OSPCA ACT We need OSPCA. What we do not need is OSPCA as it is now. We need the decision makers, management and the Board of Directors to be replaced with compassionate people who will care about the welfare of animals. We do not need people in those positions who continue to allow unacceptable action perpetrated by OSPCA agents who act with impunity and have money as their priority instead of animals.
SAVE THE CHATHAM DOGS SEIZED BY OSPCA
In the matter of the dogs seized as the result of a criminal investigation involving the operation of a dog-fighting ring in a rural area of Chatham-Kent in October 2015, and the subsequent announcement that OSPCA is seeking court permission to kill the remaining 21 dogs, we request immediate action be taken by the Provincial Government to intervene in this decision and save these dogs. (referred to as the Chatham dogs) While it is understood that some or all of these dogs may be "pit bull" or "pit bull" types and may fall under Breed Specific Legislation in Ontario, we ask that you allow these dogs to be moved out of the Province of Ontario and their lives be saved. History has taught us that despite being in a dog fighting ring most of these animals can be rehabilitated with training by experienced dog handlers and animal behaviourists as was the case with the Michael Vick dog fighting ring in 2008. Best Friends Sanctuary in Utah took 22 traumatized, bruised and angry dogs from horrific surroundings and allowed them to heal. Many became adored family members in loving homes. Some went on to become service or therapy dogs. Only two were ordered by the court to remain at Best Friends for life. They have become known as the "Vicktory Dogs" Hershey's Anti BSL, ADFC (Anti Dog Fighting Campaign) and RAAW along with many others are working to help save these dogs. They should be given the same opportunity to flourish the Vicktory dogs had. You cannot allow OSPCA to simply discard them like a piece of bad meat. There are rescues both in the U.S. and in Canada willing to work with these dogs to foster, assess and rescue them so they can live out a full life. We request you intervene and instruct the following: OSPCA give a public accounting of all dogs seized in the raid including those which are pregnant; OSPCA withdraw their plans to obtain approval from the courts to kill any of the remaining dogs; OSPCA actively work in conjunction with an unbiased third party, chosen and approved by a committee of interested stakeholders, to perform individual behavioral assessment on each dog; OSPCA actively work in conjunction with a committee of local ethical and recognized rescues to find rescuers experienced in rehabilitation and who will foster and rehome out of province if necessary; OSPCA actively protect the lives of these dogs while such assessments and inquiries are being carried out and confirm that no dog will be killed in the interim while final arrangements are being made. OSPCA can not be permitted to continually seize and kill animals with impunity