Animal Abuse Registry A Good Idea?
Dora the Explorer and Sweet Pea at the ReHorse Rescue Ranch
Sacramento, CA - Should animal abusers be required to submit a photo and address to registry website? This was the subject of a recent myMotherLode.com online poll. The majority, 64% were in favor, and 34% were not in favor of a registry website.
The first county in the country to set up an online registry for animal abusers was Suffolk County in New York in October, 2010. It was followed by two other counties in the state; Rockland in May of 2011, and Albany in October.
According to the Animal Legal Defense Fund, legislation is being considered in five states to create online registries, much like those required for persons convicted of arson and sex crimes. Those states are; Arizona, Maryland, Florida, New York, and Colorado.
In April 2010 California bill SB 1277 was passed by the California Senate Judiciary Committee but failed to advance further due to exorbitant cost estimates provided by the California Department of Justice. The Animal Legal Defense Fund maintains that, "By intervening in criminal abuse cycles, animal abuser registries have the ability to spare shelters and other city/county departments from having to absorb costs generated by repeat offenders."
In other news, the Humane Society of the United States ranked California number one in the humane treatment of animals for the third year in a row. The Humane Society credited "strong citizen support for ballot measures and robust and consistent efforts by the state legislature." They cited several examples, stating that California laws: protect pets from being sold along roadsides, antifreeze poisoning and continuous chaining; prohibits use of steel-jawed leghold traps to take wildlife; bans the shark fin trade, horse slaughter and mountain lion trophy hunting; and protects farm animals from extreme confinement and tail docking.
California received 46 points out of 66 points, Oregon and New Jersey tied for second place with 40 points each. New York was given 37, despite the animal registry laws in the three counties. The Humane Society's note was that captive hunting remains legal in the state.
Written by Sabrina Ambler