HSUS Champions No 1st Amendment Rights, even in ’98

Shelter Reform Action Committee Response to the 1998 HSUS Evaluation of the Center for Animal Care and Control  hsus-1998-shelter-oppo-final2   (this is PDF link of the post)

http://www.shelterreform.org/HSUSresp.html  (this is the URL online which includes the evaluation and the opposition response, which basically cites many, many HSUS faults.) 

Those faults– which still exist today, but are even worse, with more deception and subterfuge.  [emphasis has been added in some parts below to point out the incredulous BY HSUS, even in 1998, and the pointed opposition against HSUS, even then.]

Below are statements from the opposition, which is quite lengthy. It had very little good to say about HSUS, or HSUS’ ability to make a factual assessment. You will notice that ALL of the following are mentioned:

…….. the HSUS’ questionable credibility, HSUS’cavalier attitude, HSUS media bashing, HSUS disregard for confidentiality, HSUS’ unprofessional and inappropriate conduct, HSUS’  outright support for a shelter director with no experience, and a failing shelter, HSUS’ use of false assertions of hearsay statements, HSUS’ use of misrepresentations of the actual facts, HSUS’ use of unsubstantiated “facts“, HSUS advocating for less public scrutiny and even against fundamental 1st Amendment Freedom of Speech rights, HSUS appearing to favor a kill program rather than no kill, HSUS supporting termination of shelter volunteers………IT’S ALL THERE……………………


HSUS’ credibility in preparing this report is both troubling and questionable.

Unfortunately, HSUS, and its Companion Animal division, do come to the table with some baggage. And one can reasonably surmise that this baggage may color the lenses through which it perceives many issues. Its support of euthanasia to manage animal “control” has angered many animal advocates.

It also suggests that HSUS endorses playing God with animals lives — a philosophy with which SRAC strongly disagrees.

The depths to which HSUS stooped in such media bashing demonstrates the bias with which it approached such evaluation.

HSUS has also simply disregarded the confidentiality with which it was given information regarding the case.

This, a breach of the confidentiality with which we approached such meeting, further indicates a bias by HSUS which is unprofessional and inappropriate.

HSUS’ report is riddled with false assertions and claims by Mrs. Blohm

HSUS boldly asserts that “CACC has reportedly received celebrity endorsement and assistance with publicity from actors Bernadette Peters and Mary Tyler Moore.” This misrepresents the facts.

HSUS appears to have allowed its report with unsubstantiated claims so that the CACC can now bring to City Hall an HSUS endorsement that does not comport with reality.

Instead of seeing a focus on the continuing existence of these problems, we see statements like “The HSUS places its full confidence in the newly appointed Executive Director of the CACC, Marilyn Haggerty-Blohm, who has already done much to greatly to improve public support for her agency.” We don’t see any evidence to support that statement. Public perception and mistrust of the CACC is probably worse than it has ever been. When our animals continue to suffer and die in NYC shelters, as they do, such statements merely serve to undermine real improvement.

It is sad that HSUS’ primary focus was not the shelter animals. Rather, HSUS seems obsessed with CACC’s image and how its management reacts to the public. HSUS, at times, appears to have more than subtle contempt for the very people to whom CACC is ultimately responsible.

SRAC respectfully submits that this position is utterly lacking in merit. To begin, it is far beyond the competency of HSUS to comment upon the CACC’s status as a city agency. Simply put, HSUS is not a judge. More fundamental, HSUS’s suggestion that public access and free speech at board meetings would stifle productive debate is ludicrous.

It runs in the face of the First Amendment and argues for less public scrutiny, rather than more

 Such rhetoric by HSUS crystallizes a certain non-profit, bureaucratic mentality that has helped to diminish the integrity of so many charitable organizations who grew large and wealthy, and whose officers then make decisions out of self-preservation and not charity.—–> Despite that Ms. Blohm has no prior experience running shelters, and is running a shelter that is full of problems and that killed more than 40,000 animals last year, HSUS throws Mrs. Blohm its full support. HSUS never suggests that the CACC board hire an experienced executive director, as it should have. <—————————–

In the section Euthanasia, HSUS states, “It would be unrealistic to suggest that euthanasia could be stopped at CACC facilities.” That statement is where HSUS most dramatically sells out the shelter animals of New York City.

HSUS never cites the examples of the successful programs that other cities that have dramatically reduced kill-rates.


HSUS’ disparaging of so-called “no-kill shelter” proponents belies its own philosophical low road. Such a statement — one appearing to favor a pro-kill policy — surely must fly in the face of HSUS’s charter to protect animals

Why does HSUS fail to cite other model programs? Why does it fail to state that reducing kill rates should be a goal?

HSUS’ section on CACC Volunteers is the one we find the most troubling. At the same time that HSUS admits that animals at the CACC are languishing in cages that are too small for them, they are recommending that CACC continue to suspend its volunteer program. Why? Because some past volunteers have been critical of the CACC. This suggestion is outrageous The CACC needs volunteers..

It is difficult to understand how HSUS sees volunteers as a bad thing…. 

Past volunteers who were so distressed at gross mismanagement went to the press to expose CACC injustices, including gross neglect, spite killings and power games played by shelter managers. Now, CACC management fears that volunteers are merely potential whistleblowers, to either be tightly reeled in or eliminated altogether. HSUS seems to have gone along with that.HSUS should be thoroughly condemned for allowing animals to suffer due to their bureaucratic notion of controlling volunteers from doing unknown damage to the organization.

Finally, the recommendation that NYC legislate a restriction on the number of pets its citizens can own is simply preposterous, unenforceable and likely unconstitutional HSUS doesn’t even give a number to guide legislators. Is three too few, four too many? Come on, HSUS, you’ve got to be kidding? This recommendation was clearly not thought out at all and should never have been included in the Report.

HSUS Companion Animal division is clearly out of step with the ideals of true animal protection because it is playing politics with the quality of life, and very life itself, of the shelter animal. To resign that euthanasia is simply a fact of life that we must accept is a grotesque betrayal of animal protection ideals.


WARNING   WARNING    WARNING  ———————————————————————————————–>>>

Clearly—HSUS has NOT stopped either its deception nor subterfuge; instead, it has amped up its $$$$ and conglomerates, and is filing laws against Pets in the USA at an unprecedented rate, of nearly 200 laws JUST this year.

This is VERY obviously the HSUS runaway train intent on taking down pet ownership (but claiming not to be doing so), passing bad anti-pet laws (but claiming to help pets), and screwing over the public (but claiming it’s all about “helpin’ and protectin’—YEAH—helping implement the Animal Rights Agenda that the majority of the PUBLIC don’t believe in??????



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