Letter to the Editor – Animal Rescue/SPCA


Dear Editor:
It’s time for the SPCA-AR to”Clean House” and by that I don’t mean give the floors and walls a thorough wash down to prevent Parvo virus in
dogs or Upper respiratory infection in cats.
The move from the old dilapidated Taylor Ave. shelter to a newly refurbished, redesigned shelter on Bayside Drive has effectively reduced the risks of these viruses creating substantial savings in Vet bills while making a much healthier pet population available for adoption.
By”Clean House” I mean the SPCA-AR must break the chain around their neck that continues to tie them to the past and the out dated thinking of the past that chain being the SPCA-AR’s unionized staff and contract.
Having read Union spokesman Mr. Salib comments in this paper and having listened to him on CBC radio it is clear that Mr. Salib thinks that the shelter union is more important than the shelter animals.
Mr. Salib suggests that we should not spend money to help sick shelter animals but spend it on more union employees.
Mr. Salib suggests that we should kill more animals and hire more union employees to do it.
Mr. Salib suggests that we should move to another location perhaps because this one is too easy to clean and doesn’t require enough union employees.
Mr. Salib suggests that there are no”Quick Fixes”,and while I agree,one huge step toward solving the shelter’s financial problems would be the removal of the union and replacing it with a non union workforce supplemented by volunteers a situation that is present in most successful animal shelters.
In order to survive the SPCA-AR requires more tasks performed by dedicated volunteers. To accomplish this the inflexible and self centered union must be eliminated.
The welfare of the animals must be number one and as Mr. Salib has made perfectly clear this is not the top priority of the union
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8 responses to “Letter to the Editor – Animal Rescue/SPCA”

  1. Robert Garnett

    Hi Meghan:Listen carefully to what Hanse Colburn says to Mr Salib about euthanizing not only more animals but euthanizing them in house which is not done today.Although he doesn’t specificly say hire more people if you euthanize more animals someone has to do it and he does say that more should be euthanized(Killed)therefore it would follow that to do it inhouse you would need more people and he says yes to Hanse when he asks if more should be killed and by union employees.It’s not done often today and only in the most dire of circiumstances and a professional vet who knows how to do it is brought in.You are quite correct that Mr Salib did not say that we should get a new building because this one is too easy to clean but in another written transcript on the CBC website he did say that the shelter should look at another building and I was suggesting what his reasonning might be when I said”perhaps” As for spending 800.00 on animals and adopting them for 90.00 that’s exactly what we should be doing if we can raise enough money and if the shelter can save 500.00 per week by having a job done by volunteers and having one less union employee then that’s exactly what they should do and spend the money saved to treat a sick animal but with a union that restricts the use of volunteers they can not. The purpose of the shelter is to save as many animals as posible not to provide as many union jobs as posible.I guess we have a different philosophy on that.Thanks Bob

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  2. meghan

    Yes Dave I do understand the animals come first but from the point of a union Rep his staff come first.

    Bob I have listened to the radio interview many times and still have been unable to find where Mr.salib says that he wants more staff hired to euthanize or the comment about finding a building that is more difficult to clean.

    I did hear him comment on the animals that need to be euthanized. It made sense to me truly. I mean spending hundreds of dollars on an animal just to be adopted out for ninety dollars or to not even survive the treatment.

    I know animals come first in a shelter but one operation on a special case could Perhaps neuter or spay healthy Adoptable animals.

    Please Bob if you could find the quotes you are speaking of that would be excellent.

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    1. Dave Snyder

      Megan any time their is a real sick animal whether it be Viral or broken bones Eyes problems they do what is called a Chip-In ..this is where the Public donate to this Animal ,It costs the shelter nothing! I am not against Unions but I don’t believe they should be at a non -profit Shelter who is having a hard enough time meetings Payments.. To me the Animals come first and I could care less about a Union Rep just doing his Job!:)

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  3. Jacqui

    there is no question that the old union contract that was in place placed a lot of pressure on the SPCA financially. I don’t know the status of it now – but there were certain conditions there such as sick leave that could basically be used. When you add extra ‘vacation’ days to the daily rate, it becomes a very nice salary. The financial statements are available on the CRA website (charitable organization) and are normally provided by the SPCA upon anyone’s request. Oh, and they are audited yearly as well.

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  4. Robert Garnett

    Please go to CBC information morning Hanse Colburn interview on Mar 13th to here what Mr Salib had to say.

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  5. meghan

    Funny how after looking through the many articles and listening to the radio interview I found no such information. Also saying that a union Rep only has the interest of the employees well Yes he does. That is hi’s job.

    I would understand the idea if the complaint about the union was based on high pays and lack of work. However the staff get a low wage. Most call centeres or fast food places can beat it. I understand these people are working for a non profit and do what they love but in no way shape or form does it make it easy.

    I have been unable to find the “quotes” that you have from Mr.salib. I am very disappointed in this letter and I am surprised that this has even been able to be entered into this paper.
    I believe the staff need to be unionized. Imagine these poor people what they would do how they would be walked on for the love of animals. These people need protection that a union offers

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    1. Dave Snyder

      I always understood that the Animals come first and foremost!
      And as far as wages could you inform us of the workers rates it would be nice to know this information! Thanks

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