Sunday, February 15, 2009

Gas Chambers Still an Option in Several Georgia Counties

Georgia Voters for Animal Welfare is trying to reintroduce to our state lawmakers last year's bill (House Bill 1060) to shut down the remaining carbon monoxide gas chambers used to kill homeless dogs, cats, puppies and kittens in Georgia shelters. The law, if passed, would make lethal injection the only approved method of killing homeless pets.

See, at bottom, a list of the Georgia counties and cities still using gas chambers.

We need to act quickly and effectively to garner support among our state legislators. A peaceful demonstration on the front lawn/stairs of the State Capitol is one way to draw attention to our bill and to the barely-known issue of gas chambers.


Date: Thursday, February 26th (rain or shine!)
Time: 9:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Location: State Capitol (the gold dome) main entrance on Washington Street downtown Atlanta
Directions: Exit 248A off I-75/85. Take MLK toward the gold dome, cross over Washington Street and through the next light to parking garage on right
Bring: posters saying "Ban Gas Chambers" or whatever you'd like to say, so long as you do not use profanity or say anything that will get us thrown out. No sticks/stakes, just poster board or foam core, hand-held.

Our goal is 100 people. That should be easy! We have 100x that many animal advocates in Georgia! We need to show our state lawmakers that the humane treatment of homeless pets is a high priority for many Georgia voters. Please don't use work as an excuse to not attend. We all work, but we all take a day off now and then. What better use of a personal day, a vacation day or a sick day will you ever have than this? Make your plans today and ask your boss for the day off. What does it say to the animals and to our legislators if this issue isn't worth one day off work to many, if not all of, Georgia's animal advocates? One day off to possibly end the torture of gas chambers. How can you say no? Please don't. Please be part of this important movement!

The State of Tennessee banned gas chambers a few years ago because a shelter worker died of co2 poisoning. The State of Virginia passed a ban on its gas chambers last year. "Davie's Bill" is pending in North Carolina at this moment. But Grace's Bill hasn't even been introduced to Georgia's General Assembly yet. We need your help to make it happen!

To learn more about gas chambers, visit the website of Animal Law Coalition:

Here's what Animal Control Officer, Linda Cordry, in Liberty County had to say about the gas chamber she used before her local elected officials made the humane decision to switch to lethal injection:

"The gas chamber is simply a torture device for both animal and human alike. I hate that thing with a passion. It is NOT a humane way to put animals to sleep. It is not humane for those of us that have to witness its use! To hear the piteous cries that come from within that monstrous machine is unnerving at best. At least with lethal injections, you get to hold and wish these animals a safe journey to the bridge. You get to apologize for all the horrors they've had to endure at human hands. After all it is OUR fault they were born, not theirs. I wish I could make everyone understand the pain and sorrow I live with for having done my job (being made to use the gas chamber for so long). I still have nightmares about all the innocents lost over the years."

Whether or not you can attend the demonstration, PLEASE CALL OR WRITE TO YOUR STATE SENATOR AND HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE TO EXPRESS YOUR SUPPORT OF THE PROPOSED BAN ON GAS CHAMBERS! Here's how to find out who are your Senator and Representative and how to contact them: /dbq/officials/?lvl=L

Input your zip code. Then click on 'State' elected officials. Then input your full address. Then you'll see, under Sonny Perdue's name, the names of your Senator and House Representative. Then go to this website to get their contact information, bios, etc.:

List of Counties and Cities still using gas chambers (to the best of our knowledge... there may be others):

Ashburn, GA
Barnesville, GA
Bulloch County
Butts County
Cordele, GA
Cuthbert, GA
Vienna, GA
Haralson County
Lanier County
Lowndes County
Macon, GA (City Council voted June 2008 to stop using its chamber July 1, 2009)
Mitchell County
Pulaski County
Spalding County
Sumter County
Warner Robins, GA

Thank you for reading and for joining the cause to spare our homeless pets prolonged and painful death by suffocation.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

USAP Press Release
Spalding County,

The Official Press Release from United States Animal Protection, Inc.:

Thousands upon thousands of Animals were Dragged to Their Deaths and Suffocated in the Spalding Gas Chamber. This Will End Forever July 1st.

Please call the county manager and ask this chamber be disassembled and removed immediately.

Please ask them to confirm when this gas chamber is sent to the landfill and destroyed.

We do not want another animal to ever suffer in this chamber. It is time a spay/neuter ordinance is implemented in Griffin, GA. Speak to the county manager about making needed changes in this county that will curb the pet over-population problem. Please continue to rescue from Spalding. It is still a high kill shelter..

God Rest the Souls of the Animals that Suffered so Horribly in The Gas Chamber. God Heal the Souls of the Rescuers that Understand and Feel Their Pain. Help us find the strength to fight another day for the animals.

U.S. Animal Protection has been in negotiations with the county manager and county attorney of Spalding County, Griffn, GA. Animal Shelter to end the gassings of animals. USAP expressed severe opposition to the gassing of animals and exposed the shelter for cruel killngs.

Dr.Hopkins (assisted the Congressional review of the Animal Welfare Act revision), Hillarie Allison, Founder of Rescued Unwanted Furry Friends Foundation and I, all members of U.S. Animal Protection, released publicly an immediate cease and desist letter to end gassing at the Spalding County Animal Shelter.

U.S. Animal Protection representatives educated the county attorney, the county manager and local sheriff about the inhumanity and cruelty of the gas chamber. USAP referred the county officials to the “Euthanasia Manual” by Rebecca Rhodes which proves injection is less expensive and more humane than gassing.

USAP made the county officials aware of their intentions and that they would be contacting a regulatory agency. USAP contacted the Office of the District Attorney and the GBI regarding the cruelty occurring in the Spalding County shelter as well as other shelters in the state of Georgia. USAP reminded the office that gassing was now illegal in the state of Georgia.

Georgia shelters must be exposed for cruel killings. The cruelty must be brought to light before we will see the county officials make the necessary changes from gassing to IV injection.

While we at USAP oppose the killing of healthy animals, we are realistic and know that killing will continue in Georgia shelters. We must at least see that they will not suffer when they are euthanized. We at USAP will work with county officials to implement a mandatory spay/neuter ordinance in Spalding County, Georgia.

Cruel killings occur in many shelters throughout the U.S. Cruelty in animal shelters must be exposed before we will see an end to all shelters that kill by cruel methods.

USAP members put tremendous pressure on Spalding officials, so much so that county officials agreed to stop gassing animals. On July 1st gassing will end forever at the Spalding Animal Shelter.

After many years of cruel killings by gas, we have shut down the Spalding chamber forever.

Dawn Taylor Bechtold