Animals in Florida, Maryland, Connecticut, and Minnesota To Die
The Companion Animal Protection Act is model legislation written by my organization, the No Kill Advocacy Center, that would make it illegal to kill animals in shelters when rescue groups are willing to save them, would make it illegal to kill animals if there are empty cages and kennels, would ban the gas chamber in those states that still allow it, would require shelters to provide quality care, and would mandate that shelters make their statistics public. Similar laws in other states save tens of thousands of animals every year, have reduced killing statewide by 78%, and have cut millions of dollars in wasteful spending. Such a law is not only necessary, reasonable and an effective means of saving lives, its passage would also bring sheltering procedures more in line with the humane, progressive values of the American public.
But the large, national groups that should be championing CAPA are trying to defeat it. Time and again, these organizations behave as lobbyists not for the animals being killed, but for those killing the animals.
Florida: Legislation currently pending in Florida would end convenience killing (killing when there are empty cages or rescue groups are willing to save them), it would end retribution killing (killing animals who rescuers want to save because they spoke out publicly about inhumane conditions in the shelter), it would encourage TNR for community cats, and would allow animals to be adopted out more quickly. Florida CAPA has been introduced in both the House and Senate, but it is already being opposed by regressive shelter directors. The director of Tallahassee Animal Services has argued that CAPA is a bad idea because it would require her not to kill if there are empty cages, something she insists he should have the right to do. In her view, these animals are better dead than fed.
Maryland: Legislation currently pending in Maryland would do the same. The Maryland Companion Animal Protection Act would end convenience killing, retribution killing, and end the killing of community cats who are part of managed colonies: It is being opposed by PETA which insists that communities should round up and kill community cats because those cats might kill people.
Connecticut and Minnesota: Legislation being considered by a Task Force in Connecticut would end convenience and retribution killing, as well. It is being opposed by the Humane Society of the United States, which last year helped kill a similar law in Minnesota. HSUS has stated that it will “actively fight” CAPA, that animal rescuers are hoarders in disguise, and that these animals are better off dead.
If we are to succeed at reforming our nation’s kill shelters, if we are to end convenience killing, retribution killing, cruel methods of killing, and neglect and abuse in shelters, we are going to have to do it ourselves.
- Learn more about CAPA by clicking here.
- Learn why groups like HSUS oppose it by clicking here.
- Bring CAPA to your state. Download a copy of the law and a guide to getting it introduced by clicking here. (this is a zip file so will not download to a mobile device)
- If you live in Florida, Maryland, or Connecticut, lobby your legislators to cosponsor CAPA.
- Stop making excuses for those who kill animals.
- Stop supporting these groups with your philanthropic dollars. Your donations are being used to thwart lifesaving reform.
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