Ontario Adopts New Animal Welfare SystemPublished on October 29, 2019
ELGIN-MIDDLESEX-LONDON – On October 29, 2019, Solicitor General Sylvia Jones introduced legislation to better protect animals from abuse and neglect. The legislation includes the strongest penalties ever in Canada for people who violate animal welfare laws and a more robust enforcement system.
It is estimated that more than 60 per cent of Canadian households have a pet. That’s why we have worked toward an animal protection system that will be more robust, transparent, and accountable for the people of Elgin-Middlesex-London and the people of Ontario.
“We made a commitment to take action and develop a modern animal welfare enforcement system to keep animals safe, and I am proud to say we are delivering on that commitment with new legislation that would be the strongest in Canada,” said Solicitor General Jones. “Ontarians can be confident that the government is proposing a system that will protect animals.”
If passed, the PAWS Act will strengthen animal welfare, enforcement and public trust through a new provincial enforcement model that includes:
- A robust oversight framework that will provide a single number to call, a clear public complaints process and oversight mechanisms to ensure public trust in our new system;
- A modernized legislative framework that includes updated prohibitions and obligations, modernized compliance tools, and the strongest penalties in Canada for offenders;
- A Multi-disciplinary Advisory Table that will inform regulatory development and provide ongoing advice on emerging and specific issues.
“The PAWS Act will ensure appropriate measures are in place to provide animals and their owners with the protections they deserve and that the people of Elgin-Middlesex-London expect,” said MPP Jeff Yurek. “Concerns about animal distress or abuse in our communities and across the province can be reported to the Ontario Animal Protection Call Centre at 1-833-9-ANIMAL (264625).”
The proposed new animal welfare system was developed based on input from the public through an online survey and ongoing stakeholder consultation. This feedback directly informed Ontario’s new, permanent model. Our new animal protection enforcement model will be strong, transparent and accountable to the people of this province.