Wednesday, May 19, 2010

CP24 live discussion with both THS slates' reps

That would be Michelle Wasylyshen for the Save the THS slate and Dr. Johanna Booth for the Faces of Change slate.

Well, I was going to do a write-up about it but it looks like it's already been done at Red Star Cafe, Mudwrestling.

My impression from watching the segment was that Michelle really wants to win the election and Hanna really wants to help animals.


Kylie said...

Faces of Change gets my vote because any hope I had for STTHS was lost when I saw Michelle on TV last night.

You & I got the same impression Fred, Michelle wants to win the election and Hanna wants to help animals.

Stuart Emmerson said...

I posted the same question at Red Star Cafe, but since other commentators do the same, I figure I'm OK.

I wanted to ask a question about the CP24 segment from last night, which I was also able to catch. Dr. Booth said that her slate does not support a no-kill policy, but two of the FOC members, Marcie Laking and Peter Newell, do:

Is Dr. Booth incorrect? How will a slate reconcile this substantial holdover from merging the two ART/RAIN slates?

Dr. Booth might want to consult her own members before acting as a “spokesperson”.

Thε Countεss said...

Stuart, I think she is all for the no-kill, as long as it does not compromise her oath as a vet. Not euthanizing an animal that basically has no chance - as she said, after treatment and all they can do does not work - is cruel. Please, trust me, I begged someone to euthanize a dying kitten and the answer was NO. I am sure they will follow some sort of rehabilitation for some animals, be it physiotherapy, or psychological therapy. But I think she meant that they wont make the same mistake Trow made by not euthanizing, which would have been the most kind and humane act toward many animals - especially those in the distemper area - that were dying in their cages a very slow death. At least, I do hope they are all on the same page when it comes to it.

Linda said...


I'm glad you raised this question as I too was confused when I heard Dr. Booth suggest the Faces of Change slate did not support a no-kill policy. As you've pointed out, two candidates clearly do support no-kill.

I would like some clarity on where the Faces of Change stand on divisive issue.

Fred said...

Those of us who were drafting the animal welfare policy for Faces of Change decided to not use any labels whether they be no-kill, lo-kill or anything else because they are too politically divisive, and for the most part, everyone's got a different definition of what each phrase means. Instead, we decided to concentrate on researching best practices for getting animals into homes. A lot of these best practices come from the no-kill movement and from animal welfare practices that lead up to the idea of no-kill and some of the Faces of Change slate members may use that label in describing their own personal philosophy on animal welfare. If these best practices are enacted, they will ideally lead to what some would define to be a highly functioning, no-kill shelter. For more information on the FOC animal welfare platform, without labels, please check out the webpage:

Right now, it's still just an outline of the extended platform, as the extended platform is, well, quite extended, but the extended platform will be uploaded shortly I believe.

With regards to Hanna's attempt to answer Michelle's question regarding the support for no-kill, I think there was some confusion over the question/statement from Michelle. From what I remember, Michelle was saying that no-kill meant that euthanasia was the first option when dealing with homeless animals - which makes absolutely no sense - and Hanna was defending the fact no one on the team would support euthanasia as the first option. I could be wrong about the dialogue but you'd have to replay the video to be sure.

Anonymous said...

Actually, Michelle tried to attack the FoC euthanasia policy by stating that the FoC group believes that euthanasia should be a first resort. Michelle then used the fact that the FoC group believes in no-kill as an example of wanting to use euthanasia as a first resort. Michelle repeated this argument twice during the interview and then added that no-kill was unattainable.

Euthanasia as a first resort, and no-kill are on opposite sides of the spectrum. Michelle clearly lacks an understanding of animal welfare in relation to euthanasia.

Dr. Hanna Booth never said that the FoC group is against no-kill. What she said was that Michelle’s statement about the FoC group wanting to euthanize animals as a first resort was absolutely untrue. I suggest that you watch the interview again.

Marcie Laking said...

Hi Stuart,

I’m on the FOC slate and one of the supporters of the no kill philosophy you mentioned.

People hear the term “No-Kill” and take it VERY literally. This does not mean that sick or injured animals that cannot be treated will not be euthanized. Euthanasia will be used as a means to end an animals suffering. A no-kill shelter is where animals are only euthanized if they are too sick to be treated or too aggressive to be suitable for adoption,. No-kill shelters reject euthanasia as a means of population control & I agree whole heartedly that euthanasing adoptable animals is wrong.

If you read the euthanasia policy from our group that I helped write it states: Each animal will be assessed by a team of experts, including veterinarians and behaviour specialists. If an animal presents an issue that can be treated through behavioural modification or medical intervention, we will give that animal every chance to succeed. However, if the animal is suffering and is not treatable, or if the animal is a significant public safety risk, it will be humanely euthanized. -Our slate was elected by THS stakeholders to run for the board on the Faces of Change slate, the euthanasia policy was agreed on by all parties that were running to get on the faces of change slate. Much thought was put into the wording & how it would be possible to attain it.

We did not use the words, no kill or low kill we made a very easy to understand policy that will save lives by working to rehabilitate animals instead of putting them down or worse a policy that will leave sick or injured animals to suffer & die on their own, which is inhumane.

If you have any questions at all about out platform or policies we’d like to see at the THS please feel free to contact us at

Anonymous said...

Michelle's comments on no-kill have my head spinning, but I really don't want to watch that segment one more time. I've heard quite enough.

Anonymous said...

When asked her first question last night Hanna Booth went on and on about past problems at THS. I found her very NEGATIVE. This is what I don't like about FOC. They focus mostly on critizing and come across as angry, vindictive people. Michelle was very pleasant, knowledgable and even when challenged by one caller, she gave a calm, honest answer. FOC slate appears as if they have a highly personal stake in this, in fact, too personal.

Leanne said...

Anonymous, thanks for coming over to boost the Save slate but really, that comment, it's just lame. Perhaps you'd prefer it if robots ran the THS? And how are you supposed to run a place if you don't know it's history? That's pure arrogance to think you can step into a place and solve its problems when you don't even know, or care to know, what the problems are. Afganistan anyone? Yeah, and Hanna, totally vindictive, yeah right.

Carol said...

To Anonymous. I'm almost tempted to NOT respond because it's quite obviuos that you're a plant for STHS. But since I've got a few minutes...

Hanna Booth negative? She worked every single day at the THS during the last weeks of her pregnancy after the raids. She and the other vets worked around the clock to give LOONG over due medical treatment to the over 1000 animals that were there. The sacrificed their personal lives to help those animals. Hanna reached out to her vet contacts and secured vets to help volunteer their time. Thanks to her she secured a huge supply of medical supplies since the suppliers THS usually used had cut off supplies until overdue bills were paid. She worked there until the last week of her pregnancy without complaint. She is a representation of the type of person that we WANT to see walking the halls of the THS. She CARES and she's experienced, passionate, and knowledgeable.

Now when I watched LeDrew I seem to remember him cutting Michelle off MANY times as she literally turned her body to attack Hanna after pretty much everything she said. I have a feeling we weren't watching the same show because "pleasant and knowledgeable" wouldn't exactly be traits I'd describe Michelle as exhibiting.

Your attempts to bad mouth Hanna are sad enough. But to try to cloud the fact that Michelle had no clue what she was talking about (SOMEHOW confusing "no kill" with "euthanizing as a first response"), well that again demonstrates why I really shouldn't have bothered to have taken the time to acknowledge your post.

Oh and also of interest was the first response Michelle gave - when asked what the problems were at the THS she focused on governance. Yeah, THAT was the problem. Oooops Tim was acting as CEO and President. I'm thinking the problems were more along the line of animals being neglected and suffering. But that's just a technicality I guess. If I come off as snarky well I guess it's because I'm tired of people like yourself pushing aside the hell those animals went through for years and trying instead to campaign for your friends at Save the THS. I don't know how you all can sleep at night.

Fred said...

Anonymous, if watching animals die in their cages doesn't make you angry then I'd suggest a different hobby for yourself. And yes, the protest groups did do a lot of criticizing but how else were they going to get rid of the old guard - by sitting back silently like I'm presuming you did?

You do realize that the only reason either slate is up for election is because of all that complaining. I'm pretty sure that even STHS wants to bring in a new era for the THS and that would not be possible without all that complaining.

I've written before that I don't think just protesting without offering solutions is a good idea. While both slates are obviously going to offer solutions, I feel the Faces of Change slate offers better, more comprehensive ones along with a more experienced and dedicated group to see those solutions through to completion.

Vindictive? Possibly a few of them are to some limited extent but I don't think it's an over-riding trait. It's hard not to sometimes become over emotional when an animal you've cared for for months is taken from you and put down by management without even being given a chance to say goodbye. It's difficult to hold onto a dog as it's dying because there's no help available. It's hard to see cats waste away and die in their cages because they haven't been given the proper care. Anyway, I could go on complaining as you put it.

Do you even like animals? Do you have idea what I'm talking about or is all this just bullshit crazy animal talk to you?

The FOC slate, like any group of people with diverse backgrounds, has got its problems. Believe me, working with them I know. But at least they cared, they do care and most of them, maybe all of them, will continue to care about the THS and the animals at the THS whether they get their asses onto those shiny new board seats or not.

Thε Countεss said...

I dont even know why we even acknowledge 'anonymous'. Every single person on FOC seems like the perfect colleague to me. There are the people that fought for a better THS, let me remind you 'anonymous'.

Anonymous said...


Let me clarify. I thought the idea was to move forward now, look to the future and have lively discussions about the new THS, and its revitalization. I'm sure Hanna Booth is a wonderful person! I just don't think she's a good spokesperson.

Fred said...

Anonymous, looking to the future and having lively discussions is fine but that's not exactly what you came here to do was it? You criticize FOC for complaining and yet your comment itself is not much more than one big unsubstantiated complaint about the Faces slate with a bit of boosterism for the Save slate. You can hardly expect people to not jump on your comment especially when several of the readers of this blog know Hanna personally and know first hand about her dedication to animal welfare.

Speaking of complaining, though, isn't Save the THS really big on complaining about the OSCPA right now? The whole campaign for STHS these last few days has been based upon complaining about the OSPCA. I hope you've been criticizing them about that because it seems to me they've bought first class tickets on that media gravy train. What board is the STHS running for again?

If you are really concerned about animal welfare and not just someone sent here by STHS to propagandize, then I really encourage you to read the FOC platform and look through their website and then come back and put up some real criticisms and then we can have our lively discussion.