According to reports, Jim Sykes has stepped down from his position as OSPCA Chief Operating Officer. For animal welfare activists in Ontario, this is definitely a step in the right direction!
Before joining the OSPCA in October 2009, Sykes held the position of president and CEO of the Hamilton/ Burlington SPCA. During his tenure, Sykes initiated the relocation of dogs from New Orleans to Hamilton in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. While a noble idea, what many fail to realize is that the "Katrina Dogs", as they came to be known, were infected with heartworm. To make a quick buck, these untreated dogs were sold to citizens for $470.00 each. Unfortunately for the rest of the Ontario animal population, the sale of these untreated dogs caused the rate of heartworm in Ontario to skyrocket over the last two years. We have Jim Sykes to thank for that. Meanwhile, the Hamilton/Burington SPCA was able to thank Jim Sykes for leaving the organization over $400 000 in debt! Yet, the OSPCA decided, in their infinite wisdom, that he was a perfect candidate for the position of Chief Operating Officer. Just another example of how poorly organized the OSPCA has become under it's current management. Say the CEO of McDonald's mismanaged his position to the point of acquiring tainted beef, causing countless customers to become seriously ill as a result. Do you really think the board at Burger King would be clamouring to hire that individual? Genius move OSPCA.
Let's not forget it was Sykes who, during the "ringworm outbreak" (of course I use quotes as it has since been proven to the Ontario public that there never was such an outbreak), was quoted in the Sun saying the killing of 350 infected animals would have saved 2,000 animals that could have been dropped off at the shelter in the next four months. So I guess we should all thank Jim Sykes for the needless killing of over 100 animals (the current estimated figure) in one sitting.
Here's the good news : Jim Sykes will soon no longer hold a position involving the care of OUR animals.
Here's the bad news : CEO Kate Macdonald, Chair Rob Godfrey, Chief Inspector Connie Mallory, and Tanya Firmage (Director of Operations, Animal Welfare) still seem to have it in their distorted minds that their "service" to Ontario animals is nothing short of exlempary.
What a legacy you have left for our animals Mr. Sykes. Unfortunately, your cohorts continue to keep it alive by refusing to do the right thing for our animals by stepping down. When the day comes that they do resign, then, and only then might this decision be indirectly looked upon as a glimmering light of hope in an otherwise tainted career.