The public has a right to know what happens at their animal shelters, like how many animals are impounded and whether they were adopted out or killed. With this knowledge, advocates can determine if humane changes need to be made. Now, a bill in New York could strengthen that lifesaving shelter transparency.

The New York Senate Domestic Animal Welfare Committee is considering Senate Bill 3411A, which would improve necessary oversight of animal shelters and ensure the public knows what is happening in their local shelter facilities. Alley Cat Allies is asking New York residents to speak out in support of this important bill.

The bill would require all animal shelters that receive state funding to keep records of animals entering and leaving their facilities and what their outcomes were. Then, the shelters would have to prepare an annual report of these numbers. These reports would be published online so the public could access them at any time.

Strengthening oversight of animal shelters helps to ensure they are properly caring for animals. Likewise, when shelters are transparent, the public knows that tax dollars are being used to support humane and effective policies that improve the lives of animals. Transparency helps shelters increase adoption rates, attract volunteers, and gain community support. People want to support a shelter they know is working to save lives.

The Senate Domestic Animal Welfare Committee is holding a hearing on the bill on Wednesday, May 1. If you live in New York, learn how you can attend the hearing in person, or email your legislator in support of S3411A.