From an online gift to a charitable gift annuity, your contribution will have a significant impact in the lives of thousands of animals.
Top Advocacy Highlights of 2023
Posted on Jan, 1, 2024 by MSPCA Advocacy
Here are some highlights from 2023 that you made possible! We are so grateful for your hard work.
Lobby Day for Animals returned to the State House after 4 years! Senators and representatives who sponsor animal protection legislation spoke at the event to share their commitment to helping animals and passing these bills. Constituents then met with their legislators to discuss animal bills they are passionate about in hopes of garnering further support! Our Massachusetts legislative session runs for 2 years — from 2023 through 2024 — so we expect a lot more bill movement year!
North Andover became the 13th Massachusetts municipality to pass a humane pet store law. Pet stores in this town will not be able to source from “puppy mills” and other animal mills and instead can partner with shelters and rescues. North Andover resident Erica led this effort as part of her community service initiative called “Paws For A Cause” in her role as Miss Boston’s Teen. Erica, a high school senior, has been a volunteer at Nevins Farm in Methuen, and has also raised funds and engaged in other activities to protect animals.
Last month, Brookline Town Meeting Members banned the sale of mammals and birds in pet stores, and prohibited the use of exotic animals in traveling acts within their borders. Thank you to Brookline high school animal advocates (Ezra, Hanna, and Cleo) who led these two measures to success! This makes Brookline the 14th municipality to pass a humane pet shop ordinance and the 15th to pass a ban on traveling wild animal acts. It is also the second most comprehensive humane pet store law in the state, covering a large number of animals.
With the persistence of our friends at GREY2K USA and State Senators Jehlen and Creem, betting on dog racing finally ended on August 1 in Massachusetts. While greyhound racing was banned at the ballot in 2008, people had been allowed to bet on dog races happening elsewhere, keeping the cruel industry alive. This is now prohibited!
We are so proud of our local advocates who helped create change for animals in their municipalities. Lexington became the 6th community in Massachusetts to ban the sale of new fur products. We are also thankful to the Boston City Council, and particularly sponsor Councilor Liz Breadon for passing a measure to add guinea pigs to the city’s humane pet shop ordinance that passed in 2016.
This year, our staff attorney Lynsey Legier assisted with 117 animal cruelty investigations and prosecutions. From those cruelty cases, 17 animals seized as evidence were either surrendered, forfeited, or positively impacted. Lynsey filed or assisted with the drafting and filing of 12 petitions seeking costs of care in court, ultimately freeing animals sooner from the “legal limbo” they face while awaiting the adjudication of the case.
Our Community Advocacy Leaders program launched this year! Our 30 (and growing) Community Advocacy Leaders have spent the year attending monthly meetings, researching animal issues, advocating in their community, lobbying on behalf of MSPCA’s priority issues, and building their own group of advocates who have already logged more than 900 volunteer hours!
Throughout the year, we were joined by legislators at our MSPCA Animal Care and Adoption Centers so they could see the work we do in the communities they represent. While our adoption programs work to bring people and pets together, our Community Outreach programs work to keep families and pets together. We were able to discuss all of our important programs and how they impact their cities and towns and the people and animals who live in them.