Sunday, March 4, 2012

Gwinnett Animal Shelter takes a new direction

Gwinnett Animal Control has taken a new direction by terminating embattled shelter director Lt. Mary Lou Respess. There has been no official announcement on who will take over as shelter director although the Gwinnett POlice Department which manages the shelter under Chief Charles Walters is expected to temporarily supervise the shelter until a new shelter director is selected.

While We the Pet Owners of Gwinnett has called for a change to a more compassionate shelter director we have also long acknowledged that the shelter director itself was not the real problem in running the shelter but instead the shelter was hampered while being run under the Gwinnett Police Department itself.

Policing agencies historically do a very poor job running shelter operations. Progressive communities are moving towards partnership arrangements with the humane community privatizing animal control where the responsibility of enforcing the animal ordinances and road patrol still fall under enforcement jurisdiction but shelter operations themselves including the critical role in working with the rescue community and the public seeking homes for all the adoptable shelter pets is dramatically more effective while also be cost effective for taxpayers.

We the Pet Owners of Gwinnett would encourage Gwinnett's Animal Task Force to take this opportunity to take a hard look at other successful partnerships including the Fulton County - Barking Hounds Foundation partnership in the Atlanta area and successful partnerships in communities like Reno Nevada where Washoe County Animal Control partners with the Washoe Humane Society in that successful program as well.

You can share your comments with the animal task force at the following link:

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