Yesterday afternoon, I received a call from Emma Reilly, a reporter with the Hamilton Spectator. She wanted to talk to me about the new animal bylaws that have taken effect in my city, and to get my opinion about them. You can read the full article here.
She told me that the city has decided to allow victims of animal attacks using public records. But there's still a couple loop holes that the city could use to not give out the information. Firstly, there must be charges pressed, which is also the city's choice. And secondly, the manager of animal control has the discretion to give out the information.
So lets look at the criteria for releasing the information a little more closely. There has to be charges pressed. We didn't find out that the city was even pressing charges against someone until a couple week before the trial, which was over a year after the attack. And we hadn't even heard of the guy before, so what chance did we have to find his identity if the city didn't lay charges?
Then the manager of animal control gets to decide if you get the information. But there's no guarantee that you'll receive the information, so you could go through an attack and the city still might withhold the information you need. This is still insufficient when you consider the freedom of information act, because if you can't get certain information, for whatever the reason, the act doesn't really exist.
So after reading the article first hand this morning, I did have a good feeling. Councillor Jason Farr said it right that things are now better than they were before. At least now Max's death wasn't really for nothing, because something good did come out of it. The laws are better so other families and people are better protected, but I can't help but think that they could still be better. Either way, today we can celebrate a small victory, but we still have another court date on November 20, so we're not out of the woods yet.
WELCOME TO JIM'S AUTISM BLOG
Hi everyone and thanks for visiting our blog. My wife and I created this blog to chronicle our experience while raising a son with Asperger's syndrome. Since our son was diagnosed with an ASD at age 5, we've had a lot of questions. Lucky for us we have a great support network in place. And our blog gives us an opportunity to share what we've learned with our readers. We hope you find our blog informative and interesting. Thanks again for visiting.
"It seems that for success in science and art, a dash of autism is essential." Dr Hans Asperger 1906-1980