Some Toronto Humane Society employees allowed back to work
Web Staff, cp24.com
Published Tuesday, December 29, 2009 11:08AM EST
The Toronto Humane Society opened to some of its employees Tuesday for the first time since it was raided in November for alleged animal cruelty.
The society’s River Street headquarters opened its doors to about 35 employees at 9 a.m. following a court order acquired by THS management allowing it to resume operations.
The humane society’s former president and four senior employees, who have been charged with animal cruelty, are among about 45 staff members who remain barred from the facility.
The shelter is closed to the public until further notice.
Officials from the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and police raided the location over a month ago amid allegations of animal cruelty.
Among the allegations, investigators say they found animals whose skin came off when picked up and allege many of the animals were not fed properly.
At a Tuesday morning news conference involving both organizations, the OSPCA’s Rosalind Ryan said her organization will continue its investigation at the shelter and hopes to remain involved in the animals’ care.
Meanwhile, humane society spokesperson Ian McConachie said the five-week closure has been difficult.
“We are very happy to return to the shelter with our staff to resume business operations,” he said.
He also said the organization is seeking a new executive director and an advisory committee of animal care experts to advise the board and management.
THS President Bob Hamley, one of the accused in the case, released a statement criticizing the lengthy investigation at the shelter.
“We are pleased the court has recognized that the unending occupation of the THS had to stop,” said the statement.
Members of the public requiring shelter services have been asked to contact City of Toronto Animal Services in the meantime.
The case returns to court on Jan. 4.