Head of N.S. SPCA won’t resign
By LAURA FRASER Cape Breton Bureau Tue. Apr 15 - 5:44 AM
SYDNEY — The president of the Nova Scotia SPCA says she will not step down despite calls for her resignation from some members of the animal rescue community.
A letter went out to the society’s board of directors on March 5 asking for Pamela Keddy’s resignation, alleging she and past president Judith Gass damaged the SPCA’s reputation by taking too long to seize animals from an allegedly negligent shelter owner in Cape Breton.
"Their allegations are unfounded," Ms. Keddy said Monday. "The investigation was one by the book."
A probe into the Celtic Pets Rescue shelter started last October after The Chronicle Herald alerted SPCA officials to the possibility of neglect. In February, the SPCA seized more than 100 feces-encrusted animals from Zonda MacIsaac’s shelter in two separate raids. Another 25 animals were seized from her mother’s home about a week later.
The investigation was prompt, Ms. Keddy argues, adding that the SPCA had to gather evidence against Ms. MacIsaac before it could obtain a warrant. The animal protection agency staked out the shelter in January for several weeks after Ms. MacIsaac refused to co-operate with the investigation.
"It’s very frustrating when people say we have not acted appropriately, because we most certainly have," Ms. Keddy said.
Joan Murray and Janet Chernin disagree.
"We have concerns about the delays and inaction prior to the seizure of animals at Celtic Pets . . . (and) the perceived ineffectualness of the Nova Scotia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals," the women wrote in their March letter to the society’s board.
Ms. Murray said they wrote the letter on behalf of about 15 people who feel that Ms. Keddy and Ms. Gass should resign.
She said there is evidence that at least one previous complaint was also mishandled.
"This is nothing new," she said.
Ms. Murray is a former member of the SPCA. Her membership was recently revoked because of an internal disagreement with Ms. Keddy, she said. The president said Ms. Murray made a previous dispute public, jeopardizing the society’s donations.
Ms. Murray and Ms. Chernin asked in their letter that a non-confidence vote be held at the society’s annual general meeting on April 26 if Ms. Keddy and Ms. Gass do not resign.
Ms. Keddy responded that the board of directors voted unanimously at its March meeting not to put the vote on the April meeting’s agenda.
First off, I'd like to say that I'm not one of the people who were deemed "special" enough to be one of those "15 people" included in the letter sent to the Executive of the NS SPCA asking for the vote of non-confidence - so I personally have nothing to do with Joan Murray's and Janet Chernin's letter.
There IS an interesting line in the article though -
"The president said Ms. Murray made a previous dispute public, jeopardizing the society’s donations."
Is all Pam Keddy worried about is the Society's donations? She's not worried about the welfare of the homeless and abandoned animals anymore? If a member of the Society speaks out about an aspect of the SPCA that they believe is not being handled right - and it's picked up by the media - and it might somehow impact people giving donations to the Society - that then falls under the Bylaws 12 a) and b) - thereby giving the Board of Directors cause to revoke their membership? That makes them an enemy of the Society?
It all comes down to money? And not the welfare of the animals?
That is pretty sad, I'd say.
As well - another line is bothering me - the line "Ms. Keddy responded that the board of directors voted unanimously at its March meeting not to put the vote on the April meeting’s agenda". I know the names of every member of the Board of Directors of the NS SPCA - and I KNOW that not every member is in agreement with the management of the Board and its Executive - especially since the Executive is trying to dismantle one of the branches that the Board members currently runs (that doesn't make for happy Board members if you know what I mean). So for the life of me - I can't understand how ANY vote could be unanimous at this most delicate time in the history of the Board of the NS SPCA.
Look before you leap.