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Help us oppose MNCAPA

Help us oppose MNCAPA

Please join with Animal Humane Society and many other Minnesota animal welfare organizations in expressing opposition to the Minnesota Companion Animal Protection Act (MNCAPA).

The MNCAPA bill introduced in the Minnesota House (H.F. 391) is scheduled to be heard this Thursday (February 27) in the Agriculture Policy Committee.

Letter to Minnesota representatives in opposition to MNCAPA

Letter to Minnesota representatives in opposition to MNCAPA

 

February 25, 2014

The Honorable John Benson
The Honorable Jeanne Poppe
Minnesota House of Representatives
State Office Building
St. Paul MN 55155

Dear Representatives Benson and Poppe,

We are writing to express our opposition to H.F. 391, the Minnesota Companion Animal Protection Act.

MNCAPA is a bill that sounds good but could have dire consequences for animals.

Advocacy and rescue

Advocacy and rescue

Animal Advocates

The Animal Advocates network is a group of people committed to making a difference in the lives of animals in our communities. Together, they contact their state senators and representatives to support legislation that will keep animals safe.

Key highlights of the bill that will criminalize documentation of animal cruelty

 

Key points of the bill that will criminalize documentation of animal cruelty

What the bill prevents

  • S.F. 1118/H.F. 1369 will prohibit individuals from “producing a record which reproduces an image or sound occurring at the animal facility.”
  • This essentially bars an individual who comes across or is aware of potentially illegal activity that is harmful to animals from documenting (photo, sound, video) the problem in any way.

How it will prevent us from rescuing animals from abuse

Requires unnecessary holding periods

MNCAPA requires unnecessary and extended holding periods for animals


If MNCAPA were enacted, it would require extended holding periods for all surrendered animals, needlessly delaying adoption and multiplying the cost of sheltering many of the 30,000 animals Animal Humane Society takes in every year.

Corresponding bill language: 4.1-4.9

Requires animals be doubled up in cages

MNCAPA requires animals to be doubled up in cages


If enacted, MNCAPA would require that animals be doubled up in cages, increasing stress in the shelter system and the chance for animals to contract disease.

Corresponding bill language: 7.16-7.32

Requires exhaustive paperwork limiting animal care

MNCAPA requires exhaustive paperwork and certification limiting animal care


If enacted, MNCAPA would require exhaustive paperwork and certification that must be completed by veterinarians and administrators, which will needlessly drain away funds and reduce the time they can spend on the direct care of animals.

Corresponding bill language: 3.21-3.24, 6.6-6.16, 6.32-7.10, 9.3-10.10

Permits any animal organization to seize pets from a shelter

MNCAPA permits any unregulated animal organization to seize pets from a shelter

If enacted, MNCAPA would not allow Animal Humane Society to partner only with its trusted rescue partners, but instead would permit any unregulated animal organization to seize pets from its shelters — without having to prove their ability to provide quality care.

The language in the bill loosely defines what is a “rescue group” and requires organizations like Animal Humane Society to allow any animal welfare organization designated as a 501(c)3 by the Internal Revenue Code to remove animals from its care. It can only deny those that have been convicted or are currently charged with animal cruelty.

Corresponding bill language: 2.20-2.22, 5.8-5.17, 5.24-5.31

This does not ensure the protection of Minnesota’s companion animals because:

  • 501(c)3 is a marker of an organization’s tax status, it does not qualify an organization as one that treats animals humanely;
     
  • it provides a loophole for rescues that are designated as non-profits to subsequently turn animals over to groups and individuals that are not covered by the legislation;
     
  • it does not provide for an oversight agency that will oversee the standards of care noted in the legislation (4.10-5.7) other than allowing another public or private shelter or rescue group to take legal action and control of another organization (10.11-10.15).


Please note that reputable rescue groups are often unable to take in animals from shelters because they are already operating at or beyond their capacity. Each year, Animal Humane Society takes in hundreds of animals from Minnesota shelters and rescues because they do not always have the resources to care for them. This bill misleads the public into thinking there will always be an organization available to take in these animals.

This bill will set a standard in Minnesota where animals can be taken from animal shelters by animal welfare groups that do not have the means or capacity to care for them. Unfortunately, Animal Humane Society humane agents have had cause to remove animals from Minnesota animal welfare groups operating as a 501(c)3 because they were in violation of the Minnesota animal welfare chapter.

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Imagine AHS under MNCAPA
Dixie is a 14-year-old spaniel mix at AHS with terminal cancer that won't be placed for adoption. A man from a nonprofit group we've never worked with wants to take Dixie. Because MNCAPA gives any group the right to claim our animals,  we have no choice but to let Dixie go. Two months later, our humane agents find Dixie sick and starving in a barn, along with 150 other animals. Because of MNCAPA, we were forced to give Dixie to hoarders masquerading as a rescue organization.

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More information

MNCAPA requires exhaustive paperwork and certification limiting animal care

MNCAPA requires animals to be doubled up in cages

MNCAPA requires extended holding periods for animals

Oppose laws that hide animal abuse in Minnesota

Take action to keep Minn. animal welfare laws moving in the right direction

Contact the authors of the bill, Senator Doug Magnus and Representative Rod Hamilton, and your personal State Senator and State Representative and ask them to oppose S.F. 1118/H.F. 1369.

Ask them to work toward protecting Minnesota companion animals, not to further hide the neglect and cruelty that occurs in our state.

Senator Doug Magnus, author of S.F. 1118
(651) 296-5650
sen.doug.magnus@senate.mn

Write a letter to the editor

Write a letter to the editor

Consider writing a letter to the editor of your local newspaper. Educate others in your community about inhumane dog and cat breeding and the need for breeder regulation.
 
A few tips

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