Stand up and report animal cruelty with these steps
Because posting it on social media isn't enough
Jul 3, 2017
It was a Friday afternoon in Manila Bay when Josephine Carreon caught with her camera a kutsero beating his horse in the head with a tube while she was taking a video footage for her documentary.
In her Facebook status, the man told her that he was just “waking the horse up” when called out. Then he walked away with his kalesa.
Well, nobody wants to be waken up like this:
After this incident, Carreon sent an e-mail to the Philippine Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) to report what she witnessed. This is just one of the ways one can help eliminate animal cruelty in a community. Here are other things you can do:
Report to barangay officials or call 117
Informing the officials of the nearest barangay or calling the police hotline 117 is the best way to report an animal cruelty in progress, which is according to PAWS “persons in the act of a ‘dog katay’ or selling and buying dogs for the dog meat trade, or inflicting harm to animals.” And for the prosecution of criminals for the violation of the Animal Welfare Act, a willing witness is needed because PAWS needs the complete details (date, time, exact location, people involved).
“From our experience at PAWS, all ‘117 officers’ treat these reports seriously and send a mobile patrol right away,” PAWS states on their website.
Send details to PAWS for investigation or ocular inspection
PAWS can send warning letters to offenders, investigate, or do an ocular inspection by giving them the following information like what Carreon did:
- full name and complete address of the animal offender
- your full name and contact number
- name of barangay captain, contact number and address of the barangay hall where cruelty has occurred or is occurring in
- your witness affidavit which includes your personal account of the incident. It should be precise and leaves no room for doubt. (See example here.)
File a barangay complaint
Let the barangay know that there’s an animal offender in your area so that they can watch out for them. Give them a copy of The Animal Welfare Act. If they haven’t had a lecture on animal welfare, PAWS conducts it for free if they just ask.
And if the barangay officials don’t take your complaint seriously, you can write an affidavit so PAWS can file administrative charges against them.
File charges through court case
Send PAWS an e-mail of your witness affidavit and their volunteer lawyer will review it for free. Remember that you need to put every detail in there. Once the lawyer gives it a go, you may file it at your City Prosecutor’s Office.
Here are some questions to answer for a foolproof testimony:
- What are the circumstances that led you to believe that such persons will inflict harm or intend to inflict harm to the animals?
- Have you seen them hurt/slaughter animals in the past?
- Was there anything they said?
- How did they act that convinced you that they were going to slaughter?
The Animal Welfare Act punishes offenders by six months to two years of imprisonment or a fine from P1,000 to P5,000.
As PAWS says, “the creation of a more peaceful society starts with the widening of mankind’s circle of compassion which includes animals, thereby envisions a nation that respects animals, practices responsible pet ownership and protects wildlife.”
Featured image courtesy of Paws.org.ph
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