16th November 2016
I recently attended the ‘Animal Abuse and Domestic Violence International Perspectives’ conference held in Sydney hosted by Lucy’s Project. I left so inspired by the great work Anna Ludvik and Lucy’s Project are doing to raise the awareness and educate about an area of domestic violence not often spoken about. To read more about Lucy’s Project please visit their website and like the Facebook page.
Notice of motion.
The Hon. MARK PEARSON (11:07): I move:
(1)That this House commends Anna Ludvik, founder of Lucy’s Project, for her work in raising awareness of the issue of animal abuse victims of domestic violence.
(2)That this House notes that at the recent “Animal Abuse and Domestic Violence International Perspectives” conference held in Sydney hosted by Lucy’s Project international guest speaker, Allie Phillips from Sheltering Animals and Pets Together [SAP-T], USA, spoke about the bond between companion animals and human victims of domestic violence, citing the example of Hank, a Great Dane who shielded his female guardian McKenzie from a brutal attack by her partner, noting that:
(a)Hank was honoured for his courage and bravery by the Humane Society of the United States receiving the Valor Dog of the Year and People’s Hero award at the Fifth Annual Dogs of Valor Awards;
(b)Hank threw himself on top of McKenzie when her partner began attacking her with a hammer, in order to protect McKenzie from the blows;
(c)the partner then began attacking Hank, beating the dog, throwing him from the porch by the neck;
(d)McKenzie escaped and called the police who arrived to arrest the partner and found Hank still alive but suffering a broken hip and ribs;
(e)McKenzie sought refuge at the Rose Brooks Center but when she learned she could not bring Hank with her, she refused to go until the centre agreed to change its “no animals” policy;
(f)as a response to the story of Hank, the Rose Brooks Center shelter is building a wing that will house the companion animals of victims of domestic violence; and
(g)Susan Miller, CEO of Rose Brooks Center, has said: “Families need to have a safe place to escape to, a place that welcomes the entire family including pets”.
(3)That this House acknowledges that many human victims of domestic violence are unable to leave abusive partners and seek safety due to the difficulty in finding emergency shelters or rental accommodation that provide housing for companion animals.
Motion agreed to.