In response to the Winograd news bulletin posted below, Jim Bickhart responded to Mike Bell as follows:
“Please note that the ADL/Winograd bulletin is about a private humane society, not a public shelter. There's also a Washoe County Animal Services and there's not mention of how they're doing. And, yes, in most of these dual animal agency situations there's a difference, and it's a difference that matters.
According to the Humane Society stats, their kill rate for dogs was already down to 14% in the same quarter of 2006 before and now it's at 7.8. And they're talking about 192 kills instead of 313 over three months. It's nice progress but it's also a completely different situation and order of magnitude than what we're dealing with here.”
In fact, Bickhart is wrong. The original bulletin from Winogard reads:
The Players: A new leadership team at the Nevada Humane Society (NHS) headed by Bonney Brown, a comprehensive network of rescue groups and volunteers, and staff at both NHS and Washoe County Animal Services.
The Results So Far: Dog deaths down 44%, cat deaths down 43% county-wide (inc. animal control) for the same period as last year. Overall, 92% of dogs and 78% of cats being saved for the first quarter of 2007.
Nathan’s bulletin refers to cat and dog euthanasia county-wide, including animal control.
Bickhart and Boks incessantly drag out the same tired and invalid argument: “Those numbers apply to private shelters or small municipal shelters; LAAS is public and huge. Therefore, LAAS will never be able to attain those save figures.”
Bull. Carl Friedman, director of the San Francisco Animal Care and Control—a municipal shelter, says there is NO REASON why LAAS cannot match San Francisco’s 80% Live-Save rate. He said LA has huge resources compared to SF. We do, a budget 7 times theirs and 8 times as many employees.
Bickhart’s argument that SF is a whole magnitude smaller than LAAS is untrue. SF is 1/5 the size of LA. They have 9,500 live-impounds compared to LAAS’s 46,000, more than 1/5 as large as LA. They have 150 active volunteers, or 3.4 volunteers per employee. LAAS would have to have 1,100 active volunteers to be comparable. How many do we have in LA?
SFACAC does volunteers right; LAAS does it wrong.
They have 43 full time employees and a $2.8 million budget. LAAS has 320 employees (or 400 according to Boks to Council) and a $20 Millinon budget ($25,000,000 according to Boks to Council). Both our budget and employees are about 8 times larger than SF, but we handle only 5 times more.
They have one shelter handling almost 10,000 animals. We have 6 shelters handling an average of 7,500 ctas and dogs a year.
Philly is more impressive. Philly has 1.5 million people, or more than 1/3 of LA. They have a $3.2 million budget, not $20 million (or 25 according to Boks). They have 60 employees, not 320 or 400.They are a comparable shelter. Though slightly less live save rate in 2006, they decreased the number of animals killed from 88% to 35%, or 26.5% per year, compared to LAAS’s stable 41% kill rate over those two years.
Bickhart’s argument is entirely bogus and supports his defensive attitude that LAAS stands alone as having the most monumental problems of any shelter. Bull.
The “problem” is that LAAS does not work while other progressive shelters do.
Even small shelter systems have an intake only a little smaller than one of our six shelters, and a budget comparable to that of any one shelter: $3.2 million. Jim’s argument just does not hold no matter how he frames it.