The British Columbia Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (BC SPCA) has launched a new animal abuse hotline to respond to complaints of animal cruelty and neglect across the province. Calls to the new toll-free hotline 1-855-622-7722 are fielded by staff at a Victoria-based BC SPCA Call Centre and details are dispatched to regionally based SPCA constables for investigation. Previously, calls of suspected animal abuse were handled by SPCA branches and passed on to cruelty investigations staff.
“The new Call Centre will not only help us deal with suspected cases of animal cruelty in a centralized and streamlined manner, but it will also free up staff in our branches to spend more time providing hands-on care for the animals already in our facilities,” says Marcie Moriarty, chief enforcement and prevention officer for the BC SPCA.
Moriarty said the BC SPCA hopes the new toll-free line will make it easier for those who witness abuse to report it. “We investigate more than 6,000 complaints of animal abuse a year and we depend on members of the community to alert us to situations where animals are in danger. By providing a central animal abuse hotline, we believe we can respond to reports of neglect and abuse even more efficiently.”
Moriarty noted that while the new hotline will initially field calls pertaining to animal cruelty only, the BC SPCA plans to eventually broaden the scope of the new Call Centre to include wildlife calls and general enquires.
The BC SPCA cares for nearly 29,000 abused, neglected, injured and homeless animals each year at 37 SPCA locations across the province. The non-profit society depends on community donations to fund all of its activities, including cruelty investigations.
Anyone with information about a suspected case of animal cruelty is asked to call the new BC SPCA hotline at 1-855-622-7722 (1-855-6BC-SPCA).