Davey's Voice is a nonprofit established in honor of puppy Davey, a horrific example of human cruelty wherein this puppy was brutally tortured to death It is the mission of Davey’s Voice to establish positive change. We aim to:
Create awareness regarding animal abuse.
Empower the public to advocate for voiceless, victimized animals.
Bring animal abusers to justice.
Support projects and programs that promote animal welfare.
With the following initiatives, we pledge to make Santa Barbara the most animal responsible county in California and to continue this mission throughout the United States and beyond.
ANIMAL ABUSE COURT HEARINGS AN EMPOWERING EFFECT
We at Davey's Voice attend EVERY County of Santa Barbara Superior Court legal proceedings regarding animal abuse to bring awareness to the fact that animal abuse is happening in our own community and will not be tolerated. We give regular updates on court outcomes and inform the public when animal abuse proceedings will be taking place so that they may join us in being a voice for the voiceless. Our presence has empowered several animal abuse witnesses to testify in court, whom may have otherwise not been heard. "We are all so terribly sad about what happened to Davey, but instead of just being sad and stopping there, we see Davey's Voice people with their t-shirts, in court, every time. Then there is a great conversation happening in the court rooms. 'Who are these people?' And they come to Santa Maria, and the come to Lompoc and suddenly voiceless animals aren't voiceless anymore." -Santa Barbara District Attorney, Joyce Dudley
ANIMAL ABUSE REGISTRY
Currently, there is no existing mechanism to prevent someone convicted of animal abuse from walking into a shelter or going on Craigslist to adopt a new animal. An animal abuse registry is a solution that would allow animal shelters to screen potential adopters, alert law enforcement to the presence of residents with a history of hoarding and warn communities about violent offenders.
OPPOSITION TO THE REGISTRY
The cost of building registries or mandating new reporting requirements has been a concern in the past. According to a report issued by the Tennessee General Assembly in 2009, a registry there would cost the state $26,200 per year. Colorado conducted a similar analysis in 2002, which found the costs for developing and maintaining an abuser registry at $18,514 the first year and $10,994 for subsequent years.
WHY COST SHOULD NOT BE A DETERRING FACTOR The animal-human abuse link Studies now show that there is a strong correlation between animal abuse, domestic abuse, child abuse and elder abuse. In 88% of cases in which child abuse is reported in the home, animals are also being mistreated. As such, animal abuse is one of four indicators that F.B.I. profilers use to asses future violent behavior. These cross reporting assessments are essential in preventing abuse situations. An animal abuse registry would undeniably be a valuable tool in the community and for our law enforcement.
Therefore, it is our goal to support the creation of animal abuse registry in Santa Barbara. With the help of other nonprofit groups and animal advocates, we also intend to create and maintain an online animal abuse portal including:
A nationwide database of city, county and state agencies in which to report animal abuse.
A social networking platform with user-generated content - e.g., reporting of animal abuse cases and animal cruelty law
THE DAVEY'S VOICE FILM FESTIVAL
The Davey's Voice Film Festival is an evening of animal related films showcasing the relationship between humans and animals. The selected films are intended to bring awareness of the hardships faced by animals on all fronts and to create positive social reform for their benefit. It is our hope that film goers will feel moved by this cause, become activated in the fight against animal abuse, and reflect on the ways in which animals are impacted daily in their lives. To ensure a balance of films that entertain as well as educate, the festival also screens funny, warm-hearted and joyful films.
PAWS UP FOR PETS
The Paws Up for Pets campaign promotes compassion and accountability for animals, targeting afterschool and summer-enrichment programs in Santa Barbara County. Our goal is to empower local youth to make a difference by showing others that they care about animals and by inspiring empathy among friends and family members and in the community as a whole.
Paws Up For Pets Aim to:
Inspire a greater sense of compassion and respect for animals and other living beings.
Empower children in our community to speak up about neglect and abuse and to feel safe in doing so. There’s a proven link between animal abuse and family violence, and when children (and adults) report animal abuse, they could save more than one life. The ripple effects could be endless.
Promote the importance of spaying/neutering and provide free spay/neuter and other services to families in need. This way we will see a reduction in the number of unwanted litters of kittens and puppies, fewer animals in our shelters, and improved quality of life for pets and their owners.
Create awareness around shelter pets and the need for rescue/adoption. Through our shelter tours—more children will understand what happens when a family gives up on a pet. When children see pets as family, they are not as willing to relinquish their pets and let them languish—or die—in animal shelters.
Increase community engagement countywide and hopefully even on a state- and nationwide level. We hope that our campaign will serve as a model for other communities, state- and nationwide, in the years to come.
Collaboration with Animal Legal Defense Fund and the District Attorney's Office
District attorneys have had to face difficult choices when considering animal abuse cases. DAs are elected officials, and they know the public is outraged by cases. However, animal cruelty cases are often difficult and expensive to investigate, prosecute and convict. This is especially true in north county areas such as Santa Maria, Santa Ynez and Lompoc, where Davey's Voice has witnessed some of the worst cases of animal cruelty. A lack of resources in these areas makes it particularly trying to bring animal abusers to justice.
In 2013, the Animal Legal Defense Fund found a solution to this problem in the state of Oregon by awarding a three-year grant to fund and field the nation’s first dedicated, full-time animal cruelty prosecutor. This fully sworn prosecutor—Deputy District Attorney Jake Kamins—is available to handle animal abuse cases for any one of Oregon’s 36 district attorneys. Jake’s sole responsibility assisting with the conviction of animal abusers. It is a cutting-edge program intended to make sure that no criminal gets off the hook for animal cruelty due to a lack of prosecutorial resources.
“Animal cruelty cases are technically and factually complex; every animal is different, and I am often dealing with dozens or even hundreds of victims. District attorneys throughout Oregon are facing substantial budget challenges. Focusing one prosecutor’s resources entirely on the issues of animal neglect and abuse ensures that these defendants are held fully accountable.” - District Attorney, Jake Kamins
Now, it is our goal is to bring the program to California
With your help, Davey's Voice is prepared to contribute funding to the grant and assist in bringing dedicated animal cruelty public prosector to Santa Barbara County and the greater Southern California area. Now more than ever, animals need a voice in our justice system.
LAW ENFORCEMENT TRAINING
The Humane Society of the United States provides training to thousands of law enforcement officers across the country on how to investigate dogfighting, cockfighting and other animal cruelty crimes.
Previously, only courses dealing specifically with dogfighting were offered to law enforcement officers in relationship to animal abuse issues. Davey's Voice has co-sponsored a new course, created by the HSUS, on the handling of animal abuse calls and general animal cruelty response. The course was recently approved by CA POST and will be free to all Law Enforcement, Animal Control, Humane Investigators, Code Enforcement and Prosecutors.
Coming this September 2017, the Animal Cruelty and Fighting Investigations course will cover:
Background on dogfighting, cockfighting, and illegal animal abuse
How animal cruelty crimes are associated with other felonies
Investigating a cruelty or fighting complaint; from first response to filing charges
Interviews, warrants, and evidence collection as related to animal crimes
Knowing, interpreting, and applying cruelty and fighting laws
Collaboration with the National Law Enforcement Center on Animal Abuse, The Humane Society of the United States, and the Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department
Davey's Voice is a 501 (c) 3 Nonprofit. Tax I.D. Number 47 - 7356580. PO Box 50201 Santa Barbara, CA 93150