The Canadian Federation of Humane Societies is Canada's federation of SPCAs and humane societies. We bring together those who work with and care for animals to elevate animal welfare in Canada and promote respect and humane treatment toward all animals.
The Cruelty Free Cosmetics Act (Bill S-214), introduced by Senator Carolyn Stewart Olsen, would bring Canada in line with Europe and many other countries by stopping animal cosmetic testing in Canada and banning the import of new cosmetics tested on animals anywhere else in the world. CFHS provided expert testimony before the Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology to help legislators understand how backward and downright dangerous to human health a reliance on out-dated animal testing can be. CFHS has kept the pressure on federal decision makers to help ensure that Bill S-214 will pass when it gets to the House of Commons.
CFHS has worked closely with esteemed Senator, and former Chair of Canada’s Indian Residential Schools Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Murray Sinclair to fight for the passage of the Ending the Captivity of Whales and Dolphins Act (Bill S-203). CFHS provided testimony before the Senate Committee on Fisheries and Oceans to share our expertise on cetacean captivity, catching, importation and breeding. A bill to end cetacean captivity has since been introduced in the House of Commons and CFHS is working with the Minister’s office to ensure the new bill will be as strong as its Senate counterpart.
Throughout the year, CFHS has been vocal in the effort to strengthen the bestiality provisions of the Criminal Code of Canada. In early December we drafted a joint letter to the Justice Minister for which we obtained the co-signature of ten major farm groups, including the national chicken, pig and cattle associations. On the heels of our letter, federal Conservative MP Michelle Rempel introduced a private member’s bill (C-388) in Parliament, which seeks to strengthen the bestiality provisions of the Criminal Code using the same language that we set out in our joint letter.
Welcome Pierre Sadik, who is our new Manager of Policy and Legislative Affairs. In May 2017, CFHS hired a full-time legislative and regulatory expert to lead our government relations team, as well as our policy work. A seasoned veteran with almost two decades of experience in government relations in both Canada and the US, including with the David Suzuki Foundation, Pierre understands how to speak to legislators and senior government decision makers about issues that typically involve powerful industry opponents. CFHS is ramping up its legislative efforts at an ambitious pace, and Pierre’s insights and leadership will help us accelerate our successes for animals. It’s an exciting time to join CFHS. Welcome, Pierre!
The Edmonton Humane Society (EHS) was awarded the CFHS Animal Welfare Leadership and Innovation Award for Public Engagement for being one of the first shelters in the country to create an engaging initiative that transformed the popular trend of Pokémon Go into a successful adoption and fundraising opportunity.
EHS utilized traditional and non-traditional media to increase awareness of the campaign and launch an adoption event where users who travelled to EHS’ PokéStop and Pokémon Gym were also given the chance to adopt a rabbit or an adult cat for a reduced rate of $10. EHS raised more than $20,000, nearly doubled the adoption rates for cats and rabbits and increased the shelter’s overall adoption rate.
PetSmart Canada and PetSmart Charities of Canada were presented with the CFHS Animal Welfare Leadership and Innovation Award for Corporate Social Responsibility for their work in providing life-saving services and charitable funding that ensures that Canada’s companion animals get the care they need and are matched with loving forever homes.
PetSmart Canada and PetSmart Charities of Canada are the largest funders of animal welfare organizations in the country, having distributed $10 million in grants to Canadian animal welfare groups in its lifetime. Together, they have helped more than 232,000 pets find forever homes in Canada through their In-Store Adoption Centres, community adoption events, Rescue Waggin’ disaster relief program, granting program and funding for spay/neuter services to help combat pet overpopulation.
Mr. Geoff Urton and Dr. Ian Duncan were awarded the CFHS Animal Welfare Leadership and Innovation Award for Farm Animal Welfare for their work in helping to secure better lives for millions of Canada’s egg-laying hens through their work on the National Farm Animal Care Council’s code committee for layer hens.
Dr. Ian Duncan is the Emeritus Chair in Animal Welfare at the University of Guelph’s Poultry Welfare Research Group and a former president of the Animal Welfare Foundation of Canada. Dr. Duncan specializes in poultry welfare and is one of the foremost experts on farm animal welfare in Canada.
Mr. Geoff Urton is the Senior Manager of Stakeholder Relations for the BC SPCA and has represented the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies on several NFACC code committees as a key negotiator. Geoff has led multiple advocacy and outreach teams, successfully negotiating important hen enrichments, the national phase-out of confining sow stalls in the pig industry and ensuring mandatory pain relief for piglets and cattle.
The CFHS Animal Welfare Leadership and Innovation Award for Humane Legislation was presented to The Honourable Senator Wilfred P. Moore for his work in bringing the issue of cetacean captivity to the Senate.
Leading up to his retirement, Senator Moore focused his work on a number of marine conservation issues. In December 2016, he flew to Cancun to witness Canada sign the Hamilton Declaration in which we commit to the protection and conservation of the Sargasso Sea, a critical birthing place for eel stocks. Most notably, in 2015, he introduced Bill S-203, which aims to prohibit the captive breeding, import, export and live capture of all whales, dolphins and porpoises in Canada, while allowing for the rescue and rehabilitation of injured animals.
Bill S-203, which is endorsed and supported by CFHS, has encountered significant opposition, but Senator Moore has fought valiantly to keep it alive and moving forward so that the suffering of cetaceans in Canada can come to an end. Senator Moore’s work on Bill S-203 has put the importance of cetacean welfare in the minds of Canada’s leaders and the public.
We presented the Leadership and Innovation Award for Cooperation in Emergency Response to a committed team of governmental and animal care agencies who came together to achieve the largest cooperative animal rescue in Canadian history during the Fort McMurray fires. Forward-thinking emergency response planning allowed Alberta’s animal welfare community to respond to the fires swiftly, rescuing 1,100 registered animals from Fort McMurray homes, triaging them and transporting them to Edmonton, where they received critical veterinary care and were reunited with their families.
These organizations banded together to combine resources and to create makeshift shelters for the animals in their care, doing their utmost to ensure pets would find their way home. And, although they endured tremendous adversity in achieving that goal, ninety three percent of Fort Mac’s rescued animals were reunited with their humans.
Tremendous thanks goes to these organizations for their role in the rescue, evacuation and sheltering of the animals during the fires that devastated Fort McMurray. We are continuously inspired by your generosity, your professionalism, your willingness to work together and your steadfast commitment to animals.
Created in 1985, the prestigious CFHS Frederic A. McGrand Lifetime Leadership in Animal Welfare Award recognizes individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to animal welfare in Canada.
Dr. David Suzuki is a scientist, broadcaster and author. He is Companion to the Order of Canada and a recipient of UNESCO’s Kalinga Prize for science, the United Nations Environment Program medal, the Inamori Ethics Prize, the 2009 Right Livelihood Award and UNEP’s Global 500. Dr. Suzuki is Professor Emeritus at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and holds 29 honorary degrees from universities around the world. In 1990, he co-founded The David Suzuki Foundation with Dr. Tara Cullis. His written work includes more than 55 books.
The Canadian Federation of Humane Societies presented this award to Dr. David Suzuki for his decades of committed work for animals and the environment.