Medicine Hat TNR Campaign
UPDATE: June 16, 2023
I am delighted, DELIGHTED, to provide this update. I received this email this afternoon from the Mayor of Medicine Hat. They have found a way to not make all of us, and the cats, wait another six months for the bylaw to be re-reviewed.
They instead are having it go back before the Public Services Committee on June 26th, and if approved for recommendation there, it will be back in front of City Council at the July 4th, 2023 City Council meeting!
Please, if you are in Medicine Hat, mark those dates on your calendar. The more of us who can attend, the better as we still have council members who have remained silent on the reasons why they voted the bylaw down.
I really want to give a shout out and kudos to Council members Ramona Robins, Cassi Hider and Allison Knodel for their courage in speaking on behalf of all of us at the Public Services Committee Meeting on June 12th, and pushing this forward. Please consider emailing them and thanking them for their help.
If your council member isn’t listed above, please consider emailing them and NICELY asking them what their stand is on TNR. Without their support, this bylaw could still be voted down. I get enough nasty messaged and email doing this work and don’t wish that upon them regardless of how wrong we think they are or how much we don’t condone their inaction.
ORIGINAL POST: June 13, 2023
Thank you for your support of our campaign for the City Of Medicine Hat to expedite the TNR bylaw approval.
If you’ve not signed our petition, please click the button below to do so!
I’ve shared, and will continue to share, any correspondence I have with Council on this matter here as well (links to copies of emails below).
Although the community of Medicine Hat has clearly spoken, with 1,200 signatures and complaints flowing into the inboxes of Council, Council seems stuck on their justification that they could not pass the TNR bylaw as it was due to incorrect wording.
Notwithstanding the fact that this topic has been on the City’s radar for ten years, that APARC – the City funded pound – is continually overflowing because the City has not allowed TNR, the fact that whoever did the wording of the bylaw did it wrong, that two issues were combined that had no business being combined and further speaks to the lack of understanding of the matter by whoever drafted the bylaw, the appalling fact that Council member Robert Dumanowski didn’t even bother to look up what feral meant prior to last Mondays meeting which clearly shows his view on the matters importance, or the fact that you all walked away from last Monday’s meeting complacent with this being brought forward in another six months without any consideration for the welfare of the cats in the meantime, I do very much appreciate the handful of Council members who voted in favor of TNR.
But their votes didn’t work because more voted to defeat it than pass it.
Despite repeated requests from the City and Council, no one has been willing to provide a clear answer to the following two questions:
1. What are the City, and Council doing to ensure the TNR can be passed and when will that be? (A timeline with tasks/deliverables would be helpful)
2. What funding and resources will be flowing in the meantime to alleviate the pressure of the work and resources involved for organizations and community members in caring for the cats in the meantime? As I said in my original email, I can’t even get an answer out of the City on the cost of leasing the old food bank building to store pet food. The cost of storing is on the shoulders of my husband and I, in our garage, which we then can’t use for anything else. I’ve been asking the City for a lease rate for that building for almost a year and can’t even get a reply (despite being given a tour at the onset).
What the City is doing, by not having a solid understanding and plan in place, and not speaking and committing to helping us all care for these cats in the interim, is saying they don’t care. The money and support of these cats is coming from community members, not City coffers and that’s appalling. It’s a slap in the face and the message is we all can bear the burden of the City’s inability to pass a bylaw that should not take this long to pass.
I’m hoping that by keeping the pressure on, we hold them accountable to an interim plan of care for the cats, while we also hold them accountable to a longer term plan for the TNR bylaw approval.
Thank you so much for your support!