The Future of No Kill
No Kill is a revolution. And behind every revolution is a declaration a statement of grievances, a listing of rights and principles that underscore our great hope for the future. That is what the Declaration of the No Kill Movement in the United States encapsulates. It calls for a fundamental paradigm shift that rejects killing as a method for achieving results. It demands lifesaving programs and it sets out the inherent rights of shelter animals.
The Asilomar Accords, by contrast, are a cynical attempt by the architects of the status quo to try to co-opt the No Kill movement. The Accords allow killing to continue, condemn feral cats to death, and seek to silence critics of the status quo. In fact, some of the Accords primary architects have a long, failed history at saving lives. One kills nearly 9 out of 10 cats they take in. Another killed over 75% of the dogs and cats they impounded. At their core, the No Kill Declaration and the Asilomar Accords are philosophically irreconcilable.
Indeed, the incompatibility of the two runs throughout virtually every mandate of the documents. For example:
The Asilomar Accords allow feral cats to be killed without recrimination. The No Kill Declaration mandates that shelters adopt non-lethal feral cat programs.
The Asilomar Accords allow dogs to be killed under draconian animal ordinances. The No Kill Declaration calls for the repeal of such laws.
The Asilomar Accords say shelters do not have to put programs and services in place that save lives. The No Kill Declaration mandates that they do.
The reason many animal control shelters and their national shelter allies such as the Humane Society of the United States have seized upon the Accords is because they do not require them to do anything substantive. They can continue to kill feral cats. They can continue to oppose TNR. They can continue to refuse working with rescue groups. They can continue to keep volunteers out of the shelter. They can continue to push anti-cat laws like licensing and bans on being outdoors.
SPEAKING OUT FOR HOMELESS ANIMALS
The No Kill Declaration, by contrast, provides a fully realizable and measurable roadmap for success. And it is available to anyone sincere in their desire to end the killing, willing to implement the programs and services to do so, and to open up the doors of the shelter to the light of public accountability. It is truly the only road to No Kill.
It is has been nearly twelve years since San Francisco became the first city to end the killing of healthy dogs and cats. The programs and services which made that possible are the same programs and services that allowed Tompkins County (NY) to achieve No Kill four years ago. We know how to save lives. We know how to end the killing. What are we waiting for?
We have known for over a decade that if No Kill is going to be achieved, shelters must put in place key programs that have proved successful at saving lives. Chief among these are high volume, low-cost spay and neuter campaigns, a commitment to TNR for feral cats, a foster care program, a comprehensive adoption plan, and working with community groups such as rescue organizations and No Kill shelters. In this regard, varying philosophies are irrelevant and play no role. The only philosophy that matters is a commitment to the described lifesaving framework. Without it, shelters will be killing indefinitely and No Kill is simply not achievable.
KILLING IN THE FACE OF ALTERNATIVES
THE FUTURE OF OUR MOVEMENT
We have a choice. We can fully, completely and without reservation embrace No Kill as our future. Or we can continue to legitimize the two-prong strategy of failure: adopt a few and kill the rest. It is a choice which history has thrown upon us. We are the generation that questioned the killing. We are the generation that has discovered how to stop it. Will we be the generation that does
Sometimes it falls upon a generation to be great. You can be that great generation.
To read what the Asilomar Accords say about feral cats, punishing compassion and what happens to animals behind closed doors, click here .
To read a full critique of the Asilomar Accords, click here .
To read the U.S. No Kill Declaration, click here .
To compare the Asilomar Accords and the U.S. No Kill Declaration side-by-side, click here.
Take a moment and sign the U.S. No Kill Declaration today.