SCROLL DOWN TO FIND OUT HOW YOU CAN HELP
• A private commercial business called Reptilia wants to set up a giant reptile zoo at Fairview Mall in St. Catharines.
• Reptilia wants an exemption from Exotic Animal By-Law 95-212 so they can keep currently prohibited animals, like giant constricting snakes, large lizards, crocodilians, venomous snakes and lizards and other animals, and to transport exotic animals “to any off-site educational project, training or authorized special event activities with the City limits.”
• To protect public safety in St. Catharines many of those high-risk and dangerous reptiles were prohibited and added to By-Law 95-212 in 2013.
• Live reptile events that involve contact with animals or the surfaces they have contacted (and may have contaminated) pose a recognized zoonotic disease risk to members of the public designated as being at high-risk of infection, especially children up to 5 years of age, senior citizens, developmentally challenged/intellectually delayed individuals and others considered to be at elevated levels of risk. Current Reptilia locations offer children’s birthday parties, meet and greets, corporate events, stage shows, exhibits, some that involve animal interactions.
• Animal welfare groups and experts have serious concerns about the keeping of large, complex reptiles in artificial indoor conditions that lack space and natural conditions and the discomfort, stress and suffering that event animals may experience by being shunted from place to place for offsite events and activities.
• Allowing a large reptile zoo with prohibited animals and live reptile events throughout the City may encourage other animal businesses to also seek exemptions, and may promote the reptile and exotic pet trade, increase the numbers of animals in the City, elevate risk to local wildlife and environments, create unnecessary work for City staff who may not be equipped to deal with exotic animal issues, and waste taxpayer dollars.
• In December Toronto City Council and its Economic and Community Development Committee unanimously voted to deny the same kind of Reptilia exemption request for their City. St. Catharines deserves the same.
HOW TO HELP!
GET ON THE OFFICIAL RECORD FOR THE
JANUARY 17th CITY COUNCIL MEETING
(Make sure to mention you are writing about Reptilia’s request for an exemption to By-Law 95-212)
Write a short note letting the Mayor and Members of Council know you are a resident of St. Catharines or the Niagara Region, that you don’t think a new commercial zoo with currently prohibited reptiles is a good idea and that you oppose Reptilia’s request for an exemption to By-Law 95-212. Feel free to mention one or more of the points listed above.
EMAIL SUBMISSIONS MUST be received by noon on Monday, Jan. 17th at firstname.lastname@example.org
YOU CAN ALSO USE THE CITY OF ST. CATHARINES SUBMIT A COMMENT FEEDBACK FORM
JUST CLICK HERE and then under Submit a Comment click Office of the City Clerk. The feedback form will automatically pop up.
ST. CATHARINES & NIAGARA REGIONS RESIDENTS
A personal email that you’ve spent a few minutes writing is worth the same as dozens of form letters or hundreds of petition signatures. Even a personal one line email is far more influential than a form letter or petition signature.
If you have more to say and would like to reach the Mayor and Members of Council directly (Cut and paste the following emails into your email program):
email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org