Animal Defenders of Westchester

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We advocate on all animal protection and exploitation issues, including experimentation, factory farming, rodeos, breeders and traveling animal acts.

Animal Defenders of Westchester
P.O. Box 205
Yonkers, NY 10704

Letters
Shelter should adopt no-kill policy

Published letter in THE JOURNAL NEWS

Journal News, The (Westchester County, NY)
The Journal News
May 1, 2002

Shelter should adopt no-kill policy

Showing Animals Respect and Kindness supports the efforts of the Friends of the Yonkers Animal Shelter in its efforts to upgrade this shelter. SHARK was present during the first talks with Deputy Parks Commissioner August Cambria concerning this shelter, and we were happy to note that there is a nonprofit volunteer group able to give attention to the needs of this shelter, currently little more than a dismal dumping ground where healthy animals go to die.

The standard shelter credo is "every life is precious." We want the Yonkers shelter to ascribe to the credo, with an eye toward it becoming a non-kill shelter. This is possible and doable, as long as there is a commitment by shelter management to stop the killing, period. One New York shelter recently reduced the death rate by 78 percent by implementing a specific plan of outreach.

Management contacted churches and businesses, saying "Anytime you have an event, I'd like to be there and bring some pets who need homes." They contacted the media constantly, believing that staying in the public eye increases awareness and availability of homes.

They made shelter hours more accessible to the public and created a volunteer program that increased the number of volunteers from four to 130. And they made sure that no animals left the shelter without being spayed/neutered.

Please help us make the Yonkers shelter fit the true definition of the word shelter: "A refuge, an area of protection."

To reach "friends," please visit www.Friendsofyonkersshelter.com .

Kiley Blackman

Yonkers

The writer is Northeast representative, SHARK/Westchester


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