Wednesday, March 23, 2016

OPEN LETTER TO YASIR NAQVI, Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services

To:  Minister of Community Safety and Corrections;

March 23, 2016.

Yasir Naqvi;

You recently received thousands of letters and emails as the Minister in charge of the portfolio who can help Ontario dogs.

Over the last decade you received a minimum of a hundred thousand plus letters and documented emails asking your government to remove breed specific language in the Dog Owners Liability Act (DOLA) and help Ontario dogs.

Your government has seen numerous protests at Queens Park and received countless petitions and pleas over the past decade demanding an end to the discriminatory breed ban only Liberals voted for in 2005.  There has been bills put forth by different parties to end the breed ban. One bill passed 2nd reading and committee meetings but was not called for 3rd reading and lost months later due to prorogation.

Recently one newer petition with over 75,000 signatures again requested your government help Ontario dogs.

Another recent petition from entitled "Save The Chatham Dogs Seized From The OSPCA" is closing in on 40,000 signatures and every signature generated an email to the Premier, executives at the OSPCA and your office within the last month asking you, the Premier and the OSPCA to help Ontario dogs so we KNOW you are hearing us.

The breed ban has NOT decreased overall dog bites and has NOT improved public safety.  You are aware of those facts but still your government attempts to deceive the public by continuing to justify this ban?   You fully understand people and dogs are being unfairly stereotyped and profiled and this Minister is NOT acceptable.

Your government ignored expert testimony against the breed ban when former Attorney General Michael Bryant decided he wanted to ban certain dogs and ignored the 32 recommendations made from the Courtney Trempe inquest.

The now disgraced former attorney general Bryant (when he killed a man in a road rage incident) has admitted to being a active alcoholic during the time of the ban and stated the ban was 50% ego. Thus this blatantly discriminating legislation should be removed and instead the Calgary model, which experts advised your government to use, should be put in its place.

Yasir you have a rescue dog.  The type of dog you have is a dog type involved in the last four documented fatal dog attacks in Canada, and in fact been involved in more fatal dog attacks than any other type of dog in Canada.  Surely YOU must get responsible dog ownership is key to decreasing not only dog bites but also rare dog bite fatalities?

NOTE: If someone came into your home seized your well socialized non-offending dog because another dog who LOOKED similar had an incident, would YOU fight for your dog in court? 
How many court cases and how much money time and effort has been spent forcing innocent Ontarians to legally fight for their non-offending pets?  Surely YOU have "some" knowledge of this and hold "some" empathy for responsible Ontario dog owners who have found themselves caught in the horrific web of discrimination that is BSL.

Time and money wasted by animal services looking for certain types of dogs has NOT been effective and deflects from animal services protecting the public from truly reckless dog owners. Ontario NEEDS breed neutral legislation so irresponsible dog owners are held accountable no matter size, breed or type of dog an individual has.

 The 21 Chatham dogs OSPCA wants euthanized are VICTIMS of BSL.  The dogs did not choose to live a life of brutality. The assessments of OSPCA are questionable. The public wants the 21 dogs to be reassessed by outside third party professionals. Thousands of dollars have been donated to give these abused dogs a legal chance to be reassessed and a second chance for a decent life.  At the very least allow the dogs to go to a rescue sanctuary during the interim where they will receive tools needed for socialization and rehabilitation. Do not stand in the way of this being done.

You have said many times now there is nothing you, the Minister with portfolio, can do to help the dogs. THAT IS JUST NOT TRUE.  Under the Dog Owners Liability Act there ARE regulations that allow you to act. The sections are 20. (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations respecting the control of pit bulls. 2005, c. 2, s, 1 (16) (e) designation bodies referred to as designated in this Act; The Lieutenant Governor in Council in de facto is YOU as Minister of Community Safety and Correctional Services.

You have also stated numerous times your government does not have legislative or regulatory authority to do anything about the OSPCA. The link below shows the press conference in 2012 for a bill your government voted down that would give oversight of the OSPCA.  Yasir was it not your government who gave a CHARITY police powers, with NO oversight, and then voted down oversight in 2012 but still YOU use no oversight for inaction to this day? Combine this mess with OSPCA being exempt from the freedom of information act and no wonder people of Ontario are up in arms.

Minister Naqvi;  WHAT IS IT GOING TO TAKE for your government to acknowledge Ontario's breed specific legislation has NOT worked and punishing good dogs and responsible dog owners is NOT unacceptable? The good people of Ontario want fair, just and reasonable legislation for both themselves AND their animals.


Fran Coughlin
Advocate for Responsible Dog Ownership
Activist Against Breed Specific Legislation

PS: BTW the form letter your government puts out year after year when pleas are made for better animal laws and to end the breed ban, has not changed in over a decade.   People are fed up with receiving the same old outdated messages again and again.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Thanks Andy.

A few years ago cartoonist Andy Donoto put out a cartoon of what he thought then was a average "pit bull" owner.  It generated hundreds of emails and letters to both Andy and the Toronto Sun. 
People sent in pictures of their dogs and of themselves.  Some with talent sent Andy their cartoons and this time they projected positive images of owners.  I believe Andy finally got that owners of these dogs are everyday people;they are neighours, teachers, graphic artists, doctors, civil employees, realtors, business owners, caregivers etc.  Just because these people don't make the papers does not mean they don't exist and by the thousands if not tens of thousands in Ontario. 
Thanks for including the "pit bull ban" in the cartoon Andy and for putting it on the top of the heap.  The ban woke up alot of people as to just how bad laws could affect so many individuals and their family members.

One can view Andy's cartoon at the link below.  The other cartoon mentioned is not worth a view.

October 23, 2012 | Cartoons | Opinion | Toronto Sun

Thursday, October 4, 2012




October 4th, 2012
Dear Government House Leader
In the last three days during legislative question and answer period you personally have accused opposition parties of promoting "guilty until proven innocent".
How hypocritical as THAT is exactly what you, your party members and Dalton McGuinty did to thousands and thousands of Ontario citizens when your party passed the 2005 New Ontario Dog Owners Liability Act (DOLA).  It was your party that actually legislated "reverse onus" and took away presumption of innocence.  
Sir do you have any idea how many responsible citizens have gone to court to save their non-offending family pets lives since 2005?  Ontario citizens automatically guilty when no crime  committed?  Yet you have spent days in legislature lamenting the possibility of same for a single person because he is a colleague of yours?
We know from one web site alone Queens Park Liberals have received over 223 THOUSAND emails demanding "guilty until proven innocent" be amended in DOLA by removing the breed discriminatory portions in DOLA. Still your party continues to do nothing to right that injustice?   
Three bills have been put forth to correct this injustice for Ontario citizens.  Bill 16 has passed 2nd reading AND committee meetings and is currently waiting for you to call it forth yet you cry out for a single person to not be assumed guilty?  You as our government house leader dare to ignore the call demanding ALL citizens be presumed innocent and NOT automatically "guilty" under current Ontario law? 
Under the freedom of information act in 2007 it was found ONE Ontarian EVERY 3 days received a provincial offence for owning an assumed "illegal dog".  The crime being what the family pet looked like? These citizens also could lose professional status and their ability to earn an income as they are currently guilty in law. Going to court their only recourse to prove innocence.
Citizenship should never be a two-tier system. The justice system is for all people. This can end for many when you call Bill 16 for 3rd reading. Let legislative democracy occur and give Canadian Charter Rights back to THOUSANDS of non-offending Ontario citizens.
Do your job as government house leader for all citizens of Ontario.  
Call Bill 16 forth for 3rd reading now.   
Fran Coughlin
Advocate for Responsible Dog Ownership
Activist Against Breed Specific Legislation
Co-Founder of Hersheys Anti-BSL Group



Sunday, May 13, 2012

FIGHT For 3rd Reading of Bill 16

"EDUCATE DON'T DISCRIMINATE"! Wise advice but so far unheeded by many "Liberal" politicians in Ontario when breed specific legislation came to be under McGuinty rule in 2005.  Thus not only thousands of short haired smooth coated medium sized family pets became targets of canine racism but their human companions became victims also.

To end this stereotyping it's been seven long and difficult years of protests, court cases, petitions, fund raising, more court cases, dog shows, even more protests, rallies, special events, numerous amounts of petitions and two previous private members bills (thank you Cheri DiNovo) to get Bill 16 where it is today. A "Tri Party Bill" sponsored by PC MPP Randy Hillier, NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo and Liberal MPP Kim Craitor passed 2nd reading on February 23rd, 2012 by a vote of 51 to 26. Not an easy feat when Ontario's Premier continues to manipulate media, intimidate his caucus and whip votes. Before May 9th, of 2012 people had hope all committee members would be open, receptive and truly interested in insuring responsible, fair and effective legislation for the people of Ontario. Didn't happen

We live in what is supposed to be a free and democratic country but in "Dalton's Ontario" the CANADIAN Charter of Rights and Freedoms doesn't mean much and is given little credence. Since Bill 132 warrantless entry, reverse onus and even Canadian Charter rights to travel freely across Canada is the norm. Many people moved out of Ontario to save their family pets leaving jobs, family and friends to do so. Many former residents would like to come home. Even those travelling to Ontario from other provinces and countries are negatively affected. These are just some of the reasons why so many have fought so long and hard to have current legislation amended. Passing Hersheys Bill 16 will return equality to all citizens along with removing reverse onus and re-introducing freedom of unrestricted travel.  Getting Bill 16 where it is today has involved thousands and thousands of good Ontarians giving copious amounts of their time, effort and money.  It has been a blood, sweat and tears kind of scenario.

Don't let anyone tell you remaining a democracy in a democratic country is easy or comes cheaply. It does not. Many Ontarians know when you finally make Queens Park committee meetings the work done to get there needs to be taken seriously and deserves to be respected by all political parties and their respective politicians. Partisan politics should be left at committee meetings doorstep, a place where legislation usually becomes law.  With personal freedoms at stake, politicians who go into these meetings only to play a game for the benefit of "party popularity, power, prestige and perks" need to be voted out of office.

Why you ask if this important? Read the quote from the highest court in Ontario slowly and carefully. (Her Majesty the Queen and Phillip Huggins) "Anything enacted by legislature must be enforced however harsh, absurd or contrary to common sense".
Do you get how serious legislation is? I mean do you really get it"?  Ontarians are both appalled and offended at what happened in the committee meeting on May 9th, 2012.   Important and well thought out amendments were shot down without an ounce of serious thought or consideration after seven long hard years of extensive intensive work done by thousands of caring citizens; as those that have got there knows, getting through parliamentary committee doors is not a simple nor easy task.

Case in point. It has taken centuries, in some cases, for governments to acknowledge wrongdoings. The first human witch hunts in Europe and America occurred in the 16th century. Many of the real stories about the infamous SALEM WITCH TRIALS are still widely unknown. 150 people imprisoned, twenty innocent men and woman put to death (including a five year old girl). The underlying stories of deceit, power, financial greed and politics at the time are in fact even more intriguing than many of the old myths still told today.
 It took until October 31st, 2001 for the state of Massachusetts to exonerate the last witch killed in Salem.  That particular "witch hunt" took hundreds of years to finally, officially and legally be resolved.  When legislation becomes law, those laws should not be based on myth, hype, personal gain, propaganda, gullible votes or fear-mongering. Hopefully today's current governments will not be be so slow to right this current wrong.

Recent committee meetings were really NO different than those in 2005. All professional experts testified breed specific legislation (BSL) to be ineffective in lowering dog bites, costly to taxpayers and do not improve public safety.  Various experts cited recent worldwide studies showing banned breeds to be no more aggressive than any other type or breeds of dogs.  Countries, cities, towns, counties and one U.S. state have removed breed discriminatory laws based on documented evidence to its ineffectiveness.
 In spite of  new evidence given at two of the Ontario committee meetings, in the third meeting all   six amendments were rejected quickly, harshly and absurdly by the four Liberal representatives sitting at the table. Shades of committee meetings in 2005!  Facts and studies given by experts again ignored. Is all testimony given by so many credible professional experts to be disregarded again? Will current legislation stay in place though "public safety" has not improved? Will people continue to stand by while innocent and beloved family pets continue to be seized out of good and responsible homes and killed based only on appearance? Are "Canadian Charter Rights' to remain compromised?


How can discrimination and profiling continue to be sanctioned by government?
Why are we teaching childen to profile based on appearance?  How can myths and misinformation win over facts and studies given by professional experts?
How can decent politicians remain silent when current legislation needs to be corrected? Why are some media outlets still promoting hype while ignoring studies? How is it one single politician can whip votes, disrespect proper political procedures and subvert the democratic process?

Enough IS Enough!


1. CALL and personally talk to your elected representative insisting Bill 16 be called for 3rd reading
2. ASK your place of business for a letter of support and deliver or fax it to your MPP's office.
3. CONTACT business associates, educate them and ask for their support. Give educational tools.
4. Contact your friends and family and ask them to contact their MPP on your behalf.
5. Put up posters/flyers at dog parks, pet stores, grocery stores; every place you can think of.
6. Visit  Have friends join the page and keep up with events.
7. SHARE this blog and pass the messages of this blog and others speaking to Hersheys Bill 16.
6. Look up "Bill 16-Committee meeting" on YouTube. Listen to the experts see what really happened
8. Visit  to document and make public your MPP's letter.
9. Attend and promote the many protest walks and rallies against BSL going on all over Ontario.
10. Contact Ontario's Minister of Tourism and let the Minister know you will not be visiting.

    Lastly please consider donating to the cause.  Materials and major events cost money to produce.

NOTE:  To work around the program as written, some sentances are off or grammatically incorrect.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Why Ontario Elections Matter

Politicans make legislation and Ontario courts have deemed The Legislature does not made mistakes". Those are the words from a 2011 Ontario Appeals Court hearing. The final judgement continued; "ANYTHING enacted by legislature must be enforced however harsh or absurd or contrary to common sense". Maybe the prelude to the actual judgement was written because one of the three judges made this statement during the proceedings,"the law does not have to be wise".

Those words and the words from the judgement should strike abject fear and dismay in the hearts and minds of Ontarians if they really think about what it takes to get there and the cost incurred to be heard in the highest court of Ontario. If not, then I will repeat part of the judgement again. "Legislature must be enforced however harsh, or absurd or contrary to common sense".

Are YOU awake yet? Have you questioned what criteria was this legislation based on due to such a compliance warning? Did all the political parties have a say in it? Were the public involved and really listened to? Were professional experts consulted to advise on the matter? If so, were the experts listened to? How many letters were against the legislation and were they ever mentioned?

The simple and short answer to all the above questions is NO.

The legislation was introduced by a guy, who at the time, was a popular MPP within the Liberal party. The legislation was drawn up and ready for execution before experts could discuss with attorney general Michael J. Bryant, what advice they would give. (See link to Toronto Sun Article below.)

Oh, the experts were allowed to testify at the "kangaroo hearings" led by David Zimmer, but in the end, and after much of their expertise and time was freely given, none of their advice was taken. This after both media and the public had been led to believe differently, by Bryant himself during a CityTV interview. Bryant said, "you don’t ask an attorney general to be the dog expert. I want to put this in the hands of experts".

When eventually, after consistent outcry from the public and the experts, numerous petitions (one with thirty thousand names), and regular protests, asked IF the legislation would be reviewed (as NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo had put a private members bill to repeal the "specfic measures"), the Prime Minister of Ontario again delibrately deceived the press and public as to what experts had advised. Dalton McGuinty said; "we got the best advice we could and put in legislation, we think, upholds public safety".

The legislaton became law because MPP's within the Liberal party were basically told to pass it or face the back benches of caucas. It passed because a few of the power brokers (Michael Bryant; David Zimmer; Dalton McGuinty being the main ones) decided the vote should be whipped and sadly, so many Liberal MPP's, decided not to do their due diligence and went along with it, rather than lose status and perks. Every single MPP at Queens Park that day from the other elected political parties voted against the legislation. They had no say in what was occurring in the House of Commons. Sadly this is, was, and has, not been the only occurance showing a total lack of regard and respect for democracy under the current Liberal government.

(Remember the G20? The "secret law" that very quietly passed in legislature, unknown to all the other political party members, which took away Canadian Charter rights of everyday citizens called "The Public Works Protection Act"?
Ah, maybe now you are starting to wake up. I hope it's not the coffee.

What was also in the legislation was a little something called "REVERSE ONUS". WHAT you say, isn't that against the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms? The answer is yes. But, under this legislation (and now some others) you are automatically guilty and must prove yourself innocent - no matter what the cost to you or your family would be. (As anyone can accuse you of something, there is a reason why the Canadian constitution has "innocent until proven guilty" in it).

If you want to know about this legislation, a study was done by a university in the United States called "Panic Policy Making; Canine Breed Bans in Canada and the US". It more than mentions Ontario's passing of the legislation and compares the decison to places where it was rejected. While the whole study is well worth reading, the part about Ontario passing it starts at around page 16 and it is frightening. The fact that discrimination and profiling is now in law is frightening. The fact that a small handful of politicans, with a hidden agenda of their own, (see Panic Policy Making) can turn Ontarians into 3rd class citizens, no matter how responsible or respectable they are, is frightening. Warrantless entry into private homes and the automatic removal of ones property is frightening. All this and more is occurring all over Ontario thanks to legislation that need not be wise or "that is contrary to common sense".

When laws are passed that make all citizens pay because of a few bad apples, Ontario is in serious peril. Banning all kinds of things and attaching huge fines on the general polulous is now becoming quite commonplace under Dalton McGuinty. The Canadian Charter has been compromised on many different levels in various areas in Ontario, not just the one I speak of here. Why this election matters isn't just about the excessive debt Ontario is now under. It's not just about skyrocking taxes and hydro rates or the incompetent and wasteful spending of billions of hard earned tax dollars. This election matters because the leader in current power does not seem to value the democracy our forefathers fought and gave their lives for, nor the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. When a leader or government does not look to, respect or inforce individual responsibilty and accountability, that leader or government becomes dangerous. It will compromise OUR individual rights and freedoms, as are "guaranteed in the Canadian Charter".

That so many thousands of innocent non offending family pets are now taken out of good homes, seized and killed based on a shoddy vague discription of what dogs look like is insane. That non criminals face penalties of six months in jail and a $10,000 dollar fine when they have raised well behaved, properly trained and socialized dogs, is insane. There is a stench coming out of "the house"; our house and this fall, on Oct 6th it needs a major cleaning job.

Where Liberals allowed a "FREE VOTE"?
(Note the REAL Owners and NOT what you see in the tabloids!)
VIDEO below is a small segment of one protest walking from Queens Park.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Ontario's BAN on Dogs Hits a Milestone

Who would have ever thought five years ago, come August 29th of this year, Ontario would make dogs Public Enemy Number One? However, that is exactly what happened when the Liberal government put a ban in place putting all short haired medium dogs at risk of being taken out of good, loving and responsible homes and either killed, sent out of province (if they were lucky) or as bad, sent to research facilities.

Their crime? Looks and looks alone. The owners crime? Loving a pet with no regard to what their pet might LOOK like.

Records show that in 2007 alone one Ontarian every 3 days was charged with a provincial offence for owning an "illegal" dog and sadly these are owners who decided their family pets were worth fighting for and did not give in to the usual "give us your dog and you will not be charged" intimidation being spoken by so many animal control officers today.

These owners then would be made to do something that is against the Canadian Charter of Right and Freedoms and that is to prove themselves innocent.

"Oh Ontario, I hardly know ye".

Please join dog owners on August 29th, 2010 at Coronation Park in the City of Toronto as we attempt to end this senseless and darconian legislation?

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Has Ontario's pit bull ban proven to be a good law?

The Toronto Sun ran a poll on April 29th, 2010 and the results are below. This was after the Toronto Humane Society made public that since Bill 132 (aka Pit Bull Ban) there has been NO decrease in dog bites or attacks. Scroll down to BREAKING NEWS! THS Study Finds Breed Specific Legislation Has Not Reduced Dog Bites.

It is TIME that Dalton McGuinty ended legalized discrimination and profiling by recinding the darconian law put in place in 2005, in spite of 43 out of 44 experts being Totally AGAINST the Ban.

Archive Poll Toronto Sun: "Has Ontario's pit bull ban proven to be a good law?
No 69%
Total Votes for this Question: 3848"
NOTE: I have the the screen shot of the vote being 69% although the Sun link now shows 62%.