ADL Report on Shelters

The below was forwarded to ADL-LA by an individual in upper management who has worked at Los Angeles Animal Services for over five years:
"I have followed Animal Defense League-Los Angeles and their Stop The Killing campaign for years, and have admired your tenacity in the quest to help the city shelters become progressive, humane and no kill. So I'm really excited to let you know about some of the  positive, life-saving changes that are happening within the six City Shelters under Brenda Barnette's leadership. An amazing  group of volunteers that Brenda calls Volunteer Ambassadors –about 40 of them—meet every month to brainstorm. These amazing volunteers have taken on incredible tasks such as rallying Los Angeles to buy brand new Perla beds for every kennel is all six shelters, passing our informational flyers at Westlake Shopping Center, and organizing humane education classes. A volunteer help line for people with pets is in the pipeline, as is help for guardians needing rental housing where they can have pets. Other  volunteers are working to create an online volunteer orientation so volunteers can begin hands on training right away and to have those volunteers work more closely with the animals and with the public in order to save more animals' lives."
"Another positive change: local organizations are being encouraged to work with the City shelters to save more lives, and our community is rising to the occasion!  For example, not many people know that the City has a seventh shelter, because that shelter is not used to house adoptable animals and it has not been open to the public. Brenda worked with Best Friends to  arrange at least six Adoption Events there this year. This new program was just launched in January 2011, and the dogs and cats who were adopted in January gave the program two paws up! At a time when there has been discussion regarding closing one of the six shelters due to budget cuts, Brenda has found a way instead to expand adoptions to a seventh shelter!"
"We are also seeing that, under Brenda's management, shelter staff and volunteers are being encouraged to use their own creativity to save more lives and from what we are told, they are!  For example, during the recent rain and cold weather, staff and volunteers worked hand in hand to buy and deliver dog beds designed to keep the animals dry and to put warm sweaters on the dogs to keep them warm. Changes like this are beginning to make our shelters fun, welcoming places for volunteers and the public."
"Brenda has also been working with a few talented volunteers to redo the current LAAS web site. Anyone who has been to the site knows it's complicated, difficult to find information and has dead links on some of the menus. We have a joke in admin that the LAAS web site is one of the most user UNFRIENDLY web sites we've ever seen for an animal shelter! The launch date of the new inspirational, user friendly web site TBD- stay tuned!"
"Barnette has also asked one of her trusted Captains to chair a committee to make recommendations to management for how the shelter and field staff could best be organized! Visit all of the shelters and you’ll see that each has a personality and a vibe of  it’s own, even though they are struggling daily with the hurdle of having more animals than are being adopted out."
"Some of the most dedicated staff are scrambling to do more spay/neuters so the animals will be able to go home with the adopter immediately and they are communicating among the six city shelters to save as many lives as possible by transferring animals from crowded shelters to shelters that have some open space."
"Brenda has also inspired the formation of a new 501c(3) non-profit organization, called "Friends of LA Animal Shelters," whose sole purpose is to raise and spend funds specifically for the needs of animals not otherwise covered by the City's budget; (the City has NO budget for advertising the shelters or even for gardeners to keep the trees and bushes from covering up adoption signs and the beautiful glass murals in front of the East Valley Shelter!) But from all indications, that newly-formed non-profit will be instrumental in transforming Los Angeles into the No Kill City that it deserves to be!"
"Even though these wonderful and positive changes are finally taking place at LAAS, we still desperately need the humane community's help!!  Each and every one in the humane community has some unique way they can help, whether it is working directly with the animals, reaching out to the public, helping to raise funds or volunteering to answer phones. Another really important thing LAAS needs is contacts with celebrities, etc. Do any of your readers have CONNECTIONS with individuals who will make free banners, paint signs?
How about someone out there who may have a contact at a local news station so that we can begin to run PSA's and have regular segments about LAAS animals on their morning shows?
These are just some of the things the humane community can do to help save lives at our city shelters."
We are begging you, our readers, to please get involved in some way -- contact Erica at the LAAS administration office at             213 482-9590       or call Maria, Ms. Barnette's secretary at             213 482-9556       and give them any information on how you can help and ask them to please pass it on to Ms. Barnette. We know that together we can stop the killing!   


Anonymous said...

Any changes will be slow, if not impossible to take place as long as the "dead wood" administrators are still around.

kat said...

This is good news--a good start. How can we light a fire under the Los Angeles County Animal Shelter System now?