Wednesday, December 19, 2007

GM to the rescue

I had a phone call from a feeder about a sterilised cat being caught in one of the areas. Now it seems that they used to be in touch with the TC back when SCRS was on but they have not kept in touch with the officer since then. They could only tell me the officer was a long haired girl at the time.

I told them they needed to try and speak with their TC but that if they had problems, they could call me and I would speak to the officers.

Apparently the officers refused to give them the letter to have the cat released, asking whom owned the cat. Then they agreed to write the letter but refused to say the cat could be released without a microchip.

So the feeder called again and asked if I could speak with the TC. I called the Property Manager involved and he said that they wanted the cat released to the owner. I said that there were caregivers there willing to take responsibility and that they had said the TC could call anytime if they had a problem.

The Property Manager then said he could not promise that they would call all the time - he said for example, in Singapore there are four million people. He cannot call everyone when there are complaints because he's just too busy. I pointed out he was not looking after four million - just a portion of the estate.

I also pointed out that the caregivers would be able to help out with the complaints. I told him that they still needed to call the pest control for example - so it would still involve calling someone. He said that complaints came in at all hours, and they might get a complaint at say midnight. I told him that they would still need to call pest control when the cats were caught - and I doubt they would take calls at midnight. He then said the calls were logged and the calls made during business hours.

I asked him why this cat was caught - and he said he did not know as he was not the one who ordered the cat be caught. He said to check with his property officer whom he would speak with.

He also said that he could not go around a statutory requirement to have the cats micro chipped - I told him this was NOT a statutory requirement. The AVA micro chipped the cats so that they could not be returned to the town councils and it was entirely the TC's decision if they wanted them to be micro chipped or not.

I tried to call the property officer and was finally able to get hold of him. He said he was unable to ask for the cat to be released without a microchip. I told him I had just clarified with the AVA officer and he said this was not his understanding, so I said I'd speak with the AVA officer again and ask the latter to call him. The officer claimed that he too did not call in the pest control. I asked him who had the authority to call in pest control. He said his manager!

By this time, the two feeders were getting quite desperate. I asked them what the officers had told them - apparently according to one of the feeders, the Manager had told her the AVA had trapped the cats! The AVA however checked and said the pest control company sent in cats and said that they had trapped under the orders of the town council. The feeders said that they felt they were trying to push responsibility back and forth.

I tried to call both officers and could not get them. I left a message with the Property Manager.

A few minutes ago the General Manager called. He said that HE would write the letter and have the cats released immediately. He just wanted to know which caregivers were in the area and whom to call if there was an issue. He said he remembered having met me at a meeting before.

I know this TC has always been very helpful in general and that most caregivers there (whom the TC know of) work with their TCs when there are issues. I am very grateful for the GM's assistance and his quick response. I know the caregivers certainly are too!

The caregiver just spoke to me. They're waiting for the letter. She spoke with the GM and said he was a very nice man who told her to remember to take good care of the cat.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

What if GM not around. TC can make it a humane policy to have cats released using simple downloadable template to be sent to AVA. Complicate things.

20/12/07 2:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

or an sms to get the job done.

20/12/07 2:02 AM  
Blogger Dawn said...

A template certainly is a good idea - though in this case, I hope the caregivers will build on this and work with their TCs so the cats aren't caught in the first place.

20/12/07 6:00 AM  
Anonymous chinky said...

The question is how to prevent other similar ignorant and inefficient town council officers from making such mistakes?
Even if one is not concerned about the welfare of cats, this is a waste of town council fund by trapping the "wrong" cats. But then again, the pest controllers may be on a contract basis and therefore it doesn't make a difference to the fund.
How then do we get CWS "guide to how to deal with cat issues" across the board to all town councils.
It is scary when there is soon no one to speak out for some of us.

20/12/07 8:35 PM  
Blogger Dawn said...

chinky - I think the information is available from us. Please feel free to give it to the TCs to explain.

21/12/07 12:15 AM  

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