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Old November 1st, 2004, 12:34 PM
Sheriffmom Sheriffmom is offline
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Thumbs up MPP Churley

Hi guys, after numerous emails to MPP CHurly I recieved this letter, and also the following attachment regarding MPP Kormos. Thought I'd share
Hello.

Thank you for sending me your views on the banning of pit bulls in Ontario.

I have attached comments by the NDP Justice Critic Peter Kormos made in response to the Attorney General's statement in the legislature, which outlines his position as Critic for the NDP.

I have received many emails and phone calls calling on me to support the ban as well to oppose it, and I want to make it clear that I will support legislation that will better protect people from vicious dogs. However, I share many of Peter's concerns that banning pit bulls outright is not the solution to the problem. Statistics show that breeds such as German shepherds rank among the breeds that most often bite, and whose bites cause injury. Many experts believe that the emphasis needs to remain on ensuring that pet owners take the necessary precautions to protect the public from their pets and that enforcement and penalties be enhanced and strengthened in these areas.

Another concern is in respect to municipalities' ability to enforce this legislation. Municipalities need sufficient resources, such as animal control officers, in order for these amendments to have any teeth and there is no evidence that the government will be providing extra funds to already cash-strapped municipalities.

For these and other reasons, the NDP will continue to push for public hearings which will provide a venue for more open debate to ensure that the current legislation effectively addresses the safety concerns posed by dogs and dog owners' behavior in our community. We want to hear from all the experts who have opinions and experience with this issue who were not consulted.

If you have not already done so, I encourage you to contact Michael Bryant's office with your opinion.

Contact Information:

mbryant.mpp@liberal.ola.org
Queen's Park
Ministry of the Attorney General
720 Bay St, 11th Floor
Toronto ON M5G 2K1
Tel: 416-326-2220
Fax: 416-326-4016

Best,

Marilyn Churley, MPP
Toronto-Danforth
NDP Deputy Leader


Hansard
October 26, 2004
http://hansardindex.ontla.on.ca/hans...38-1/l078a.htm

Mr Peter Kormos (Niagara Centre): This bill purports to address what we all acknowledge as a very serious problem, a problem that has taken its toll of victims, not only across Ontario but throughout North America. I have no hesitation in acknowledging that. Our exposure to this is primarily anecdotal and I think it's fair to say that the information we receive through the news media is perhaps but the tip of the iceberg. I say to this government --
Interjections.

The Speaker: Order. I'll give you your time. I'm just going to say that when the Attorney General was reading his statement, it was quiet, people were polite and they were listening. Now the response from the member for Niagara Centre is not receiving the same courtesy. I ask the member from Niagara Centre to respond.

Mr Kormos: This is a serious problem that warrants serious consideration in a disciplined way in the context of this chamber and the rules and procedure of this chamber. It's far too important a matter for anybody to attempt to short-circuit the process. It's far too important a matter to folks across this province, to ensure that there is a full debate, that there is a thorough and intelligent consideration of all the data and evidence.
I don't doubt the sincerity of the people who advocate this bill as it stands now, and I would ask them not to doubt the sincerity of those who want to ensure that whatever legislation is eventually passed in this province is the most effective law, with enforceability and the capacity to have a meaningful impact on vicious dogs and attacks by vicious dogs, be they pit bulls or be they others.
I tell you, there has been serious conflict and contradictory statements made about who has and who hasn't been consulted. I'm not in a position -- nor would I want to at this point -- to identify any of the parties as being anything less than truthful from their particular perspective. But I'm concerned about the letter that appeared in this morning's Toronto Star from the president of the Ontario Veterinary Medical Association, one Tim Zaharchuk, who says that organization wasn't consulted.
I'm concerned there's a suggestion -- a number of columnists and journalists have been cited -- that for as many as there are who support the ban being proposed and the manner it's being proposed, there are an equal number of observers and journalists who express concerns. I'm concerned about the observation that the US Centers for Disease Control has not been adequately consulted. I'm concerned about the observation that the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals has not been consulted, that the Canada Safety Council has not been effectively consulted. The people of this province deserve to hear from those parties, deserve to know what the data are, so that we as legislators can develop the best possible legislative response to, I repeat, this most serious problem.
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We believe as well that this matter should go to public hearings. There ought to be public committee hearings so that all parties can express their views, so that there could be a public airing of the data and the evidence and so that there can be a legitimate consideration of the effect of breed-specific bans in other jurisdictions.
I'm concerned about the conflicting reports about the effectiveness of the breed-specific bans in the United Kingdom. I'm concerned about the conflicting reports coming about places like Cincinnati or Denver, where there is some suggestion that breed bans were attempted, failed and then abandoned; if they have been, we want to understand why. If there are better ways to approach this than the manner in which this legislation does it, then we're prepared to work together to ensure that that better way is implemented.
We're concerned about municipalities and their ability to enforce this legislation. It's quite clear this is legislation that has to be enforced at the municipal level. Down where I come from, and in fact across this province, municipalities are hard-pressed to keep animal control officers on duty any more than five days a week, eight hours a day. To have a breed ban or a vicious dog ban in general is meaningless unless you've got people out there prepared to do the hard, nasty and dirty work in terms of picking up this breed.
Also, the bill clearly provides for at least one more decade of so-called pit bulls in Ontario. We're talking about the so-called grandparenting. I understand why the government would want to include that in their legislation, but I very much want to understand how that jibes with their expression of such serious concern with this one specific breed.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 12:39 PM
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mastifflover mastifflover is offline
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That is too funny I just came on to post the exact samething. Well it is obvious that this issue is by no means dead in the water there are a lot more people supporting owner responsibility as opposed to banning the breed. Now that people are getting the true facts not the Michael Bryant version of the facts.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 12:45 PM
Sheriffmom Sheriffmom is offline
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I really loved the part in the Kormos interview that indicates there was some nasty things being said and the speaker says "I'll give you your time. I'm just going to say that when the Attorney General was reading his statement, it was quiet, people were polite and they were listening. Now the response from the member for Niagara Centre is not receiving the same courtesy. I ask the member from Niagara Centre to respond." Heheh..... sounds like the Fiberals don't like being questioned or challenged!!
I am really glad he got the stuff about the OVMA and SPCA and CDC not being contact into record. I thought it quite amusing. It almost sounds like (from MPP CHurlys letter) that MBryant is making ppl turn against him, because of his lies, half truths, not consulting with the proper ppl, and general inaccurate comments..... If this is the case, keep talking Michael, cause all your doing is turning ppl off!!
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Old November 1st, 2004, 12:52 PM
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Schwinn Schwinn is offline
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I heard on the radio last week from a host (I forget who it was) who said he originally supported the ban, but now he thought it wasn't right the way the Liberals are ramming it through. He also found it wierd that they were still going after it, despite the outcry from all the experts. I've been hearing more and more people saying it is a way to boost an unpopular government, and reading in the papers people who are suggesting Bryant is looking to score points for a future run at the premiership. I don't know if anything can be done with the Fibs having a majority government, but at least the public is starting to become slightly more educated.
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Old November 1st, 2004, 10:46 PM
Sheriffmom Sheriffmom is offline
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I got this one from Gilles Bisson tonight:

Attacks by vicious dogs have become a serious public issue that needs to be addressed. We need to consider all of the options in the debate. I do not believe that banning the breed is fair, nor does it address the problem.
We in the NDP look forward to participating fully in the debate to find the best solutions to this complex problem, and I appreciate your information
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