August 29, 2014 - 7:33 AM
OKANAGAN – A Vernon woman is about to launch a website that could potentially make life a lot better for thousands of animals around the world.
Camille Block is a part-time veterinary assistant and developer of the Animal Abuse Defence Registry. The registry is an online list of convicted animal abusers she hopes to make available to the public across North America and abroad.
“Basically I feel that it’s too easy for just anybody to take home an animal, and that includes people who probably shouldn’t have access to them,” she says.
The site is still in the beta stage, but Block plans to have the database completely functional by early this fall.
“We’re trying to get a variety of people using it,” she says. “We have farmers, breeders, pet stores, a bit of everybody.”
To search the registry, users type in the name of the person interested in buying or adopting an animal and instantly find out if that person has ever been convicted of abusing animals.
Block says for legal reasons they will only list offenders with convictions for animal abuse who are on Court Services Online and CanLII. She hopes however, that within the next two months her system will be integrated with the Ministry of Justice Provincial database and updated automatically.
“Right now we’ve been entering only B.C. cases manually,” she says. "Our long term goal is to eventually include all of Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. because the laws are quite similar in those places. They’re also in the same stage as we are in taking animal cruelty seriously.”
That level of redesign of the site will require thousands of dollars, so Block is going to the public for help. Her Kickstarter campaign has already received more than $1,600 of the $8,000 she needs to finish the site. With just 22 days left to reach her goal, she says the comments and donations she's received so far have come from a surprisingly wide variety of people and organizations.
“There’s been a mixture of people donating,” she says. “A lot of individuals who just love animals and there’s been quite a few local pet stores that are also saying they’d like to use the service in the future.”
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014