Animal Legal Defense Fund Applauds Improvements to New Brunswick's SPCA ActJune 16th, 2009
After Being Named One of Canada’s “Best Places to be An Animal Abuser,” New Brunswick Poised to Strengthen Penalties for Animal Cruelty
For immediate release
Lisa Franzetta, ALDF
Stephan Otto, ALDF
San Francisco – Last month, the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) released its annual study ranking the animal protection laws of each province and territory in Canada, and named New Brunswick as one of the nation’s “best places to be an animal abuser.” Just weeks later, ALDF is now applauding the New Brunswick Legislative Assembly as it is poised to pass Oromocto MLA Jody Carr’s private member’s bill strengthening the SPCA Act. The bill, scheduled for third reading on Thursday, raises the maximum penalty for animal abuse to $100,000 and up to 18 months in jail. After it becomes law, New Brunswick’s maximum fine will be the highest for animal abuse in Canada.
“We commend New Brunswick for adding real teeth to their laws protecting animals,” says Stephan Otto, ALDF’s director of legislative affairs. “This law sends notice that New Brunswick is serious about protecting animals and in ensuring that those who abuse them are appropriately punished. MLA Jody Carr deserves tremendous credit for championing this bill, and we are also gratified to see the government and Opposition work together on behalf of animals through this legislation and hope to see continued collaboration on this important front.”
Along with New Brunswick, the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and Quebec were singled out in ALDF’s 2009 report for their weak laws protecting animals. While New Brunswick’s bill is a significant step forward, there still remain areas in the SPCA Act that can be improved upon to make New Brunswick communities safer for both animals and people, and to reduce the burden on the SPCA and other groups helping animals throughout the province.
ALDF was founded in 1979 with the unique mission of protecting the lives and advancing interests of animals through the legal system. The organization has over 110,000 supporting members throughout North America. For more information about ALDF and the 2009 Canadian Animal Protection Laws Rankings report, visit www.aldf.org.