NWT lives up to its reputation. May 27, 2009 hayriverhub.com NWT voted one of “Best Places to be an Animal Abuser” as reported by Animal Legal Defense Fund.
Starving on a Chain, Inuvik 2009, courtesy BDRSPCA
Contained is my letter to the Editor of Hub Publications regarding this most recent Northern disgrace, which they were kind enough to publish.
Note that in early January 2010 I brought before this Town’s Mayor my proposal and challenge: for this town to be the first in the North to pass a Zero Tolerance Policy on Animal Cruelty. I am aware that this proposal was discussed at least twice in Council and a statement was made publically by our Mayor that a review of existing by-laws and penalities were to be reviewed. As of this date there has been no further information provided on this, we have not had a By-Law Officer since last summer and it was confirmed lthis Monday that a new By-Law Officer has not yet been hired.
Please read below and view links provided. Your own comments are most welcome.
The recent seizure of 109 dogs held at the Hobson property located on the outskirts of Hay River, is not only a disgrace in that this situation was allowed to continue through two former Municipal administrations, it is a clear message to the Government of the Northwest Territories that a Comprehensive Animal Protection Act like that of other Canadian Provinces is required immediately.
A recent letter I received from Hon. Robert McLeod has stated that the reading of the amendments to the current Dog Act before Committee has been postponed for the third time. Initial date was November 2009, then January 2010 and now it may or may not be brought before Committee until Fall 2010.
Mr. McLeod, in a prior letter stated that Municipalities across the North are responsible for developing and enforcing their own By-Laws. While this may be true, one incident which was reported to the Minister last Fall, and now this Hay River incident clears proves that Municipal By-Laws do not work when they are not stringently enforced. The unresolved incident of last Fall reported to the Minister, resulted in the needless deaths of at least ten dogs.
Kudos must be given to Hay Rivers newest Mayor, Kelly Schofield for taking the immediate action which was requested of him, Kudos must also be given to the RCMP Hay River Detachment for acting swiftly and I have been assured by one young officer that RCMP take violations under the Federal Criminal Code of Canada very seriously. RCMP Officers are also Officers under the current NT Dog Act, Section 11.
A special thank you to those that had the courage to step up, step forward and speak for these neglected animals. The individuals are to be admired and respected for their courage and morale ethics, for standing up and speaking out loud and clear that animals deserve better and that animal cruelty is totally unacceptable. Further thank you to all of those individuals from the RCMP and Fire Department that attended the property and assisted these suffering dogs, to the veterinarians brought in and to the HRSPCA who received the rescued puppies, bathed, comforted and continue to ensure they receive proper nutrition, clean fresh water and nurturing care.
How many times are we all outraged when we hear about child abuse and child pornography, crimes against the innocent.
Think about this. When a child is showing visible bruising, fear of going home or fear of a neighbor the alarm bells go off immediately and proper authorities are called in. It is taken seriously and an investigation begins.
An animal does not have that luxury. An animal must rely solely on the high moral ethics and courage of good decent people to speak out for them; they have no voice and must suffer in silence.
A child can go to a teacher or a parent, or the parent of a friend. An animal cannot.
I ask everyone to have the courage to speak up for animals that you have witnessed to be in crisis. When you go for walks carry your cell phone (most can take pictures) or digital camera. Look in your neighbors backyards. Dogs without proper shelter, water and food, chained on very short leads, living in their own filth and strewn garbage, injured and sick animals; you will find them out there. Pitiful, starving, neglected and without hope. You will see it in their eyes.
Have the courage, take the pictures, put what you have witnessed in writing; keep copies of all of it for yourself and take it to your local authorities. Insist that this be investigated. If the report is in writing, it is difficult for action not to be taken, there is no excuse for failing to investigate. Follow up a few days later to find out if anything has been done to help the animal you reported. and keep the pressure on until something is done.
The Link between Animal Cruelty and Human Violence is well studied and is recognized by legal authorities around the world as an indicator for future violent offenders. Browse the Internet and you will find many studies.
Complacency has killed far to many animals in the past.
How many are you willing to save today?
Mailing addresses where you can write to the Government of the Northwest Territories, should you wish to do so, are contained in recent posts. Please urge that Legislation be passed now to end the continued suffering of these beautiful creatures. No more postponements.
Read Full Post »