The following statement by Becky Robinson appeared in an article published by People Magazine on January 15, 2020.

Alley Cat Allies — an advocacy organization for stray, feral and community cats — responded to McGregor’s comments about feral cats in Australia with disappointment and concern over how statements like his could affect felines and Australia’s recovery efforts.

“It’s deeply disappointing that in light of a tragedy in Australia right now — with fires having killed humans, destroyed homes and caused the deaths of an estimated one billion animals, including cats — that an ecologist quoted in this story is attempting to paint cats as culprits. It’s a dangerous misdirection of attention away from the fact that fires are still raging. The best way to save wildlife is to focus on putting fires out, rescue injured animals, get food to animals, and work to prevent the spread of fires now and in the future. None of that is as easy as demonizing cats, but each of these efforts has the actual potential to help wildlife in Australia,” Becky Robinson, founder and president of Alley Cat Allies, said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.