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Brouhaha Over Grassroots Banner At LB Animal Shelter Begats Effort By LBACS And SPCA-L.A. To Coordinate Messaging, Reduce Confusion, Increase Adopted Dogs/Cats, Says Shelter Bureau Chief Dains


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(June 5, 2019, 1:25 p.m.) -- On June 1, LB animal adoption advocates hung a banner at the LB Animal Shelter (photo below.)


Shortly thereafter, Animal Care Services Bureau Chief Staycee Dains agreed to take the banner down after some type of discussion SPCA-L.A. (which has animal adoption facilities on the site adjacent to the Animal Shelter.)

So what was that all about, and what's next? Ms. Dains told us and at our request emailed a quick summary of the situation:

LBACS and spcaLA are working on coordinating messaging to the public to reduce any possible confusion from the public in order to increase greater numbers of shelter dogs and cats adopted or fostered.

The removal of the sign was mutually decided on in order to better coordinate that messaging to enhance LBACS "Compassion Saves" model to ensure all dogs and cats are not forgotten and find a loving home.

According to a PPT slide presented by city staff during an April 2019 City Council study session, since 1998 the City has an agreement with spcaLA (expires 2053) that leased land at the site to spcaLA, and spcaLA then back the facility to the City of Long Beach.

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"No Kill" advocates have for years urged implementing "No Kill" practices at the City-run shelter along with a more robust, autonomous City-run adoption program separate from SPCA-LA. The City-run shelter does conduct adoption days but SPCA-L.A. arguably has a more prominent visible presence at the site.

In an April 16, 2019 Council "study session" on LB Animal Care Services, Ms. Dains included a slide describing the City's relationship with SPCA-L.A. as follows:

Compassionate Partnerships:

  • Primary adoption partner

  • Landlord/tenant

    • Lease agreement since 1998, expires 2053
    • spcaLA leased land - P.D. Pitchford Companion Animal Village & Education Center
    • Leased back facility to the City of Long Beach
    • City pays utilities
    • spcaLA pays 50% of operating costs
    • Neither agency is obligated to the operation of the other
  • Both agencies are committed to working together
  • The differences between "No Kill" and "Compassion Saves" were candidly discussed in the study session in a colloquy between Ms. Dains and Councilwoman Suzie Price (audio clip included in LBREPORT.com coverage here.)

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    This occurs in the context of a May 7. 2019 vote by the City Council -- which sets City policy -- directing city management to implement the operational approach of a policy city management dubbed "Compassion Saves" that recites goals similar to "No Kill" themes but in substance stops short of a commitment to apply "No Kill" practices. (Item was agendized by Councilmembers Pearce, Gonzalez, Price and Mungo here.)

    The Council approved the "Compassion Saves" policies on May 7 -- to the displeasure of "No Kill" advocates -- on an 8-1 vote (Gonzalez absent, and we've learned was in Sacramento on matters related to her campaign for a state Senate seat.)

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