Thursday, September 16, 2010

Minister Refuses to Support Reform of OSPCA

(Queen’s Park) Newmarket-Aurora MPP, Frank Klees called on the newly-appointed Minister of Community Safety, Jim Bradley, to support a resolution before the Legislature that would reform the OSPCA.

Klees tabled the resolution that calls on the government to review the powers and authority of the OSPCA and to make the necessary changes to bring those powers under the authority of the Minister of Community Safety.

Klees pointed to events in early May of this year at the OSPCA's Newmarket shelter when 102 animals were killed unnecessarily to deal with an outbreak of ringworm. At the time, Klees called on the minister to intervene, but he claimed he had no authority to do so.

Since then, literally thousands of petitions have been signed in support of the resolution which will come to a vote on November 18th,  and there have been literally hundreds of complaints registered against the organization that range from gross mismanagement and incompetency to abuse of power.

"OSPCA agents are endowed with police powers and are authorized to lay criminal charges," said Klees, "But they receive less training than shopping centre security guards. That’s unacceptable.”

"Why will the minister not admit that the current legislation is flawed and agree to consult stakeholders on how best to achieve provincial oversight of animal welfare services in this province?"  Klees asked.

Transcript of the exchange is attached and the video can be viewed at: