Do we need three animal rescue societies?
By Bill Phillips
Give Angela Lotze credit.
She is dedicated to helping animals, which is what you want in someone who is going to run a humane society.
But do we really need three societies dedicated to helping animals?
Lotze, who was the manager of the North Cariboo branch of the SPCA, last week announced the formation of the Prince George Humane Society. It comes after her very public departure as manager of the SPCA. In March she and another staff member resigned their positions at the branch following allegations of another staff member bullying them and the BC SPCA’s apparent reticence to deal with the issue. The resignations were followed by eight members of the SPCA community council.
For its part, the BC SPCA really didn’t get involved in the matter until it became public and subsequently launched an investigation in the allegations of bullying. With Lotze and others now gone, its unclear what an investigation will resolve.
It’s clear Lotze isn’t going back to the SPCA.
“Due to circumstances beyond my control I found it in my best interest to resign,” Lotze told 250News. “However I have no intention of leaving this wonderful community or the countless animals in need.”
After helping to form the Fort St. James Humane Society, Lotze said once you’re involved in an animal rescue, it gets in your blood.
Right person for the job.
But, once again, do we really need three groups working on animal rescue in Prince George? In addition to the SPCA, and now the Prince George Humane Society, we also have Prince George Equine and Animal Rescue, which focuses mostly on horses but does have dogs as well.
All three rely heavily on donations to survive, so it will be a challenge for all three organizations to secure funds from a limited pool of donors.
However, there are some distinctions between the three. Lotze says the newly-formed Prince George Humane Society will focus on rural areas surrounding Prince George. The SPCA has its hands full just focusing on what’s going on in the city, so there may be room for both. In addition, with the Prince George Equine and Animal Rescue focusing on horse rescue, there may be a niche for them as well.
It’s kind of strange because I wish all three groups success, but then again I hope that they don’t have anything to do.
I’m not sure what’s worse, the fact that we have three animal rescue groups in Prince George or the fact, possibly, that we need three animal rescue groups in Prince George.
Bill Phillips is a freelance columnist living in Prince George. He was the winner of the 2009 Best Editorial award at the British Columbia/Yukon Community Newspaper Association’s Ma Murray awards, in 2007 he won the association’s Best Columnist award. In 2004, he placed third in the Canadian Community Newspaper best columnist category and, in 2003, placed second. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org