The scrutineer’s report for the Toronto Humane Society election that was held on the weekend is now available here.
Of the 2,700 members as at close of membership last November, about 100 showed up in person at the Special General Meeting, and another 700 voted by mail the previous week.
The final breakdown was telling.
It’s clear to this blogger that the members chose passion for the animals over politics by voting overwhelmingly for the Faces of Change candidates who demonstrated a breadth of skills and experience in business and governance, but also had street cred with animal welfare through their demonstrated volunteering and advocacy. There were also a handful of good independents who would have been an asset to the board if it had, say, 20 seats, and these folks could be contenders in next year’s runoff.
Members of the Faces of Change group had recognized and done something about the toxic environment that has characterized the THS for years. Several of them and many of their supporters were there for the animals during the darkest days at the shelter, when life-saving programs were cut, volunteers and staff were treated badly, and animals were dying in their cages due to lack of care.
Other members and supporters brought a fresh perspective and vision.
The Toronto Humane Society members did not choose animal welfare politics. They saw through slick but facile campaigning, ugly mudslinging and privacy violations.
I think they wanted the backstabbing and bickering to stop for the sake of the animals.
The animals of the Toronto Humane Society and the GTA are not widgets. This was not a board election for a bank or a car company.
Heartfelt thanks to the members of the Toronto Humane Society for allowing positive change to take place at the shelter, for the good of the animals in the GTA, and hopefully as an example to shelters elsewhere.
Now we move forward, and you are encouraged to become engaged in building what could well be a world-class haven for the animals. Take out a membership, join a committee, become a volunteer or just stay in touch with the new board by letting them know your ideas for the new Toronto Humane Society.