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Bryant's Announcement Today re BSL

LL1
October 15th, 2004, 09:35 AM
McGuinty government to introduce pit bull ban
Legislation To Ban Dangerous Breed, Increase Dog Owners' Responsibility

TORONTO, Oct. 15 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government is making our
communities safer and responding to the concerns expressed by thousands of
Ontarians by introducing legislation this fall to ban pit bulls in the
province, Attorney General Michael Bryant announced today.
"People want to be protected from the menace of these dangerous dogs,"
said Bryant. "Some of these dogs are nothing but a loaded weapon waiting to go
off and so we are taking action to make our communities safer."
Bryant will introduce legislation this fall to amend the Dog Owners'
Liability Act. The legislation, if passed, would:

- Ban pit bulls
- Muzzle existing pit bulls, impose other province-wide restrictions to
improve public safety, and allow municipalities to impose appropriate
controls
- Increase fines up to a maximum of $10,000 and allow for jail
sentences of up to six months for owners of any dangerous dog that
bites, attacks, or poses a threat to public safety.

If passed, the legislation would allow for a transition period for
existing pit bulls. During this time, owners would be required to comply with
strict new requirements for continued ownership.
Bryant said the proposed ban is meant to be supportive of municipal
governments, and that this proposed bill respects the municipality's authority
under the Municipal Act. This comprehensive approach would avoid a patchwork
of bans.
"I support the province's swift action," said David Miller, Mayor of
Toronto. "This problem is not exclusive to any single municipality, it is a
province-wide issue and therefore the best solution is a province-wide
strategy to keep Ontarians safe from dangerous dogs."
"My officers have encountered a number of dangerous situations involving
pit bulls," said Julian Fantino, Chief of Toronto Police Service. "This
proposed ban will help my officers and police services across Ontario keep our
community safe from dangerous dogs."
"The ban of pit bulls that Kitchener has had for the past seven years is
helping to keep our community safer from a breed that has demonstrated
undesirable, aggressive behaviour," said Carl Zehr, Mayor of Kitchener. "I
believe that every Ontarian deserves this level of safety and am pleased that
the provincial government will introduce legislation that will, if passed, ban
pit bulls province-wide."
"Our experience in Winnipeg has been one of success," said Tim Dack,
Chief Operating Officer of the Animal Services Agency of the City of Winnipeg.
"We have seen the number of pit bull incidents decline dramatically since
introducing a pit bull ban 14 years ago. I applaud the Government of Ontario
for their decision to ban pit bulls and deal with this urgent public safety
issue."
"I feel safer knowing that the Ontario government has taken steps to
protect us from the extreme danger posed by pit bulls," said Diana Fischer, a
victim of a pit bull attack. "The particular problem with pit bulls is the
inability to stop them once they have started to attack, the viciousness of
their attack and the seriousness of the injuries they inflict. I know this
based on my experience as a trainer - through which I've dealt with hundreds
of dogs - and my experience being attacked by a pit bull who was trying to
kill my own dogs."
"I commend the McGuinty government for moving forward quickly on this
very important initiative," said Rod Morrison, Mayor of Wawa. "Protecting the
public from the menace of pit bulls and toughening up on owners of dangerous
dogs that attack is in the best interest of all people, in every town, city
and community across Ontario."
"With today's announcement, we are proposing serious action to respond to
the concerns of people worried about their personal safety," said Bryant. "Our
government is committed to protecting all Ontarians from these highly
unpredictable dogs."



For further information: Contacts: Greg Crone, Minister's Office,
(416) 326-1785; Brendan Crawley, Communications Branch, (416) 326-2210

LL1
October 15th, 2004, 10:00 AM
isn't this interesting re Colorado:

Daily Camera reporter, Clay Evans, asks the rhetorical question:
"Should Labradors be banned?"

Boulder, CO proposed a ban on 'pit bulls', despite evidence this
'breed' isn't the biggest problem. As proof, Evans writes:

"According to statistics kept by city of Boulder Animal Care and
Control, "labs" - as they are so innocently called - were responsible for an
astonishing 18.9 percent of the 748 dog bites in the city from 1997 to 2003,
more than twice as many as the next highest breed (German shepherds, at 8.5
percent)."

Update!

Wednesday, April 21, 2004, Colorado Governor Bill Owens passed a
bill prohibiting any jurisdiction from passing breed-specific legislation.
The bill is effective immediately.