Monday, January 29, 2007

Meeting with the NMP

Calsifer asked how the meeting with the NMP went. To be very honest, it was more just to give him information. He wanted to know more about certain issues in relation to community cats - how are they trapped, why is sterilisation better, is there a better alternative to managing the cats, how does one keep cats out of one's garden, etc? He is gathering information and speaking with other animal welfare groups as well.

I don't think that he entirely knows what he is going to ask in Parliament yet either. He's basically doing some background research and trying to gather information so that he is better able to speak on the topic he finally decides on.

We actually do have quite a few people come to speak with us because they want to find out more about community cat issues, besides NMPs :) We meet pretty regularly with students doing school projects (meeting some students on Thursday actually) for example, who may need more information for their essays and projects. Members of the public also write in for more information as do people who want to start up TNRM programmes in our estates. It's always good to try and share the information around so that people are more aware of community cats and the attendant issues.

Incidentally, if the NMP does speak up in Parliament on this, will not be not the first NMP to have spoken on an animal related issue in Parliament. Simon Tay was the first back in 2001 I believe, when he asked about cats in HDB flats.


Blogger calsifer said...

Thanks, Dawn. Shall polish the jaundiced eye and wait on developments.

29/1/07 10:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can I invite the NMP to see for himself how cats make excellent apartment/flat pets? He can come unannounced so I can prove the point that cats are clean and quiet and are not a nuisance to the estate?

29/1/07 11:35 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Hi Anonymous, I'm not sure the NMP will even be talking about cats in flats. He didn't ask very much about it.

29/1/07 11:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not being negative but I dont know why I just dont have a very good feeling about this fellow.

Seems that his version of animal welfare is how to keep cats off the streets rather than anything else.. cats in HDB being such a vital point and he is not interested in it? But he is interested in how to keep cats away from gardens? Errr sounds like he is more concerned about pandering to the needs to those who dont like cats than those who want to save cats. hope I am not right when i said in a previous thread, opening up a box of hornets.

29/1/07 12:21 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Anonymous I don't think he dislikes the cats. However, I'm not sure what he intends to talk about - as he said it was more to gather information. Whatever it is, having more information about why cats are better sterilised, why trap and kill will NOT work, etc should be made as widely available as possible I think - even (especially?) if it is to people who do not like cats (not that I am suggesting that the NMP is one of those people).

I agree though that it may open Pandora's Box, depending on what he decides to ask.

29/1/07 12:36 PM  
Anonymous Furry said...

I fully agree with Dawn. And hopefully this NMP could pass this message amongst themselves and thereafter there might be a chance that it could be brought up in Parliament and create more awareness then. I have a question though to Dawn. Through all these years of working with CWS, what do you think about the mindset of the people these days towards community cats. Are there more acceptance or more complaints?

29/1/07 1:33 PM  
Blogger iWooiBlog said...

Ya, now it sound more like he's just doing some general research and information gathering. Cannot be sure if he will bring this topic up in Parliament.

I think we would have a better chance of raising this issue with one of the P65 MPs.


29/1/07 4:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think it's too premature to speculate how this is going to turn out. there are many animal welfare issues, not just cat related ones. it's all up in the air whether he will decide to bring up the issue at all (i am sure he has many more issues on his mind) and if he does, what kind of spin he will put on it.

just hope he doesn't turn ard and use the info given to him in support of mass culling!

29/1/07 4:47 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

Anonymous if he does, which I don't think he will, then we'll just come out strongly and rebut it. I honestly don't think killing works better than sterilisation and we can make a strong argument for it.

Also again, I think the most important thing is not to worry so much about people bringing it up in Parliament. I think people writing in, discussing it with their friends and others, is creating awareness. No matter how good a speech, it's one day in Parliament - but a series of good letters can get people thinking and discussing the issue.

Furry - it might be both just because more people are aware of the situation. I think though it's actually more of the former. I never imagined so many people would one day write into the press about cat related issues. If you told me this 5 years ago, I would have laughed.

29/1/07 5:18 PM  

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