Toronto MPP wants to scrap breed-specific legislation in Ontario
Codi Wilson, CP24.com
Published Saturday, October 8, 2016 2:08PM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, October 8, 2016 2:55PM EDT
A Toronto MPP is renewing her call to repeal breed-specific legislation in Ontario following debate over whether a pit bull ban should be upheld in Montreal.
NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo was among a handful of protesters at Queen’s Park Saturday afternoon who were calling for an end to breed-specific bans.
“I’ve re-tabled the bill for the fourth time to repeal breed-specific legislation in this province. We’ve coordinated that of course with the situation in Montreal,” DiNovo told CP24 Saturday.
On Monday, the SPCA’s Montreal branch was given a temporary stay to suspend multiple pit bull-related provisions of the city's animal control bylaw.
DiNovo says she wants the Ontario government to take action on the issue and permanently scrap the ban.
“Really what we are dealing with in this province is a cruel bill. It has been in place for 11 years. It has made no difference in the number of bites. In fact, fatal bites are up,” the Parkdale—High Park MPP said.
“We are here yet again protesting something that has no science behind it that goes after vulnerable people and vulnerable dogs and it really does not affect public health at all.”
DiNovo added that the legislation has resulted in many family pets being euthanized.
If a dog is labelled a pit bull, DiNovo said it is up to the owner to provide DNA proof that the dog is not in fact a banned breed.
“The dogs that are called pit bulls… really don’t exists as purebreds much at all,” she said.
“You are dealing with mixed breed dogs that look a certain way. So looks are in the eye of the bylaw enforcement officer and you’d have to DNA prove that your dog is not a pit bull. Well people with means and lawyers can do that. People who are poor, elderly, street kids who get targeted can’t do that so their dogs get killed. The other dogs get saved at a huge expense to the taxpayer who have to fight hundreds of thousands of dollars-worth of these cases.”