Best Wishes to Gavin Grant

Press Release
For Immediate Release
26th February 2014

The Self Help Group for farmers, pet owners and others experiencing difficulties with the RSPCA (The SHG) is very sorry to see that Gavin Grant has health problems and wishes him all the best for the future.

Ernest Vine, spokesman for the SHG said:

We are sorry to hear that Mr. Grant is ill, but we are not sorry to see him leave the RSPCA.

We wish Mr. Grant all the best with his health for the future.

Ends

Word Total:   78

Notes to Editors: -

For further comment please contact:

Anne Kasica on 01559 371031
Ernest Vine on 0744 99 89 411.

e-mail: shg@the-shg.org

The SHG was officially formed in June 1990 and has been helping people to defend themselves and their animals from the RSPCA for over 20 years.

The national help line number is 0844 700 66 90

A copy of this and previous press releases from The SHG are online at http://shgpressreleases.wordpress.com/

Archived press releases can be found at
http://www.the-shg.org/SHGPressReleases.htm

Background information on the Self Help Group for Farmers Pet Owners and Other Experiencing Difficulties with the RSPCA can be found at http://www.the-shg.org and the SHG blog:  http://theshg.wordpress.com/

Details of further criticisms of the RSPCA can be found at the RSPCA-Animadversion website:  http://rspca-animadversion.org.uk/

 

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Press release from St. Francis Animal Sanctuary rebutting claims made by Gavin Grant of the RSPCA

Press release from St Francis Animal Sanctuary rebutting the claims made by Gavin Grant of the RSPCA in relation to the content of the BBC Face the Facts radio programme.  The Brimleys can be contacted for further comment on 07880 550716.

Press Release

PRESS RELEASE

ST FRANCIS ANIMAL SANCTUARY, POTTERS BAR

For immediate release 13th August 2013

Response by St Francis Animal Sanctuary rebutting the claims of Gavin Grant, RSPCA Chief Executive, on 8th August 2013 during BBC Radio 4’s the “Face the Facts”, and subsequently by Mr Grant and the RSPCA in a further Press Release.

The conditions. The conditions in which the animals were kept were not appalling and were not and could not be so described by anyone, other than being now so described by the RSPCA. They were not ever so described at the time or since by Mr & Mrs Brimley’s own Vet., or even by the RSPCA’s Inspectors in their routine visits to the land prior to July 2010. On 21st June 2010 RSPCA Inspector Mr W. Rippon[ No. 972, East Region ] issued an “AWA 092913” Notice that plainly says that the animals are contained within a suitable environment and that the environment is clean. It does not appear that when applying for the Warrant the RSPCA took any steps to ensure that the Hatfield Police made this clear to the District Judge. Nothing happened to the site in the three weeks between 21st June 2010 and 13th July 2010 to alter this assessment. Furthermore, during those three weeks a senior Vet. from the Royal Veterinary College at Brookman’s Park (Mr Jason Tupper, M.A., Vet. M.B., Cert. EP, MRCVS. Head of Equine Practice – with whom the RSPCA was in communication at the time) came to the site after 21st June 2010 and before 13th July 2010 to treat the ponies and to give advice on worming, teeth treatment, diet, and blood tests, and did not at all suggest that the conditions in which the ponies were kept were unsuitable. Had Mr Tupper thought the conditions were “appalling” he would have said so. At no stage did Mr Tupper ever suggest that our ponies or any other animals were being kept unsuitably.

On 13th July 2010 while the raid was progressing (the operation took a whole day) careful enquiry was made on our behalf of the RSPCA’s own Vet. whom the RSPCA brought to the site, who gave assurances that no animal was actually suffering – the sole purpose of the raid was to forestall the possibility of animals suffering in the future if conditions did not change. There was in his mind one possible exception to this – he thought that the three Soay Sheep we had might have been undernourished, although behaviourally they gave no sign of this at all, and did not look undernourished. They were in fact underweight – which is a different thing ; and the reason for that was that their diet had been altered.

No Vet. on the scene on 13th July 2010 said to us :“In my personal opinion these animals had been neglected and were suffering”.

“Working with the Sanctuary as much as we could over many years”. This is quite untrue. The site had routine visits from the RSPCA going back some 20 or 30 years. Never was it suggested in all that time that the RSPCA were “working with us” or needed to “work with us” to bring the conditions up to an acceptable standard. The only question about improvement to the conditions arose in the series of visits to the site prior to the last visit on 21st June 2010. A number of suggestions were made which we were quite happy to agree and were in fact in the course of implementing, when progress was interrupted by the raid on 13th July 2010.

“The Brimleys should have been given one last chance”. This remark is patronising and offensive. One last chance to do what, exactly ? Various actions had been agreed with the RSPCA in June 2013 (railing in of the paddock ; arrangements for disposal of animal waste) which were in fact being carried out. No “one last chance” was necessary or relevant to anything.

“We continue to work with them – as recently as this week we visited the sanctuary to continue this dialogue.” This simply is not true. No-one from the RSPCA visited the site last week nor was expected to. The RSPCA does not “continue to work with us” – on the contrary, it steadfastly refuses to do anything at all about the complete mess it has put us all in by carrying out the raid that it has admitted it should never have carried out in the first place, and will not lift a finger to correct the highly damaging matter about us and this sanctuary smeared all over the internet, even though the RSPCA has the power to take corrective action.

“It wasn’t the RSPCA who put this into the public domain.” This is disingenuous to say the least. What did the RSPCA expect would happen in point of publicity by obtaining a Warrant to enter on the land (which it had standing permission to enter at any time it reasonably wished anyway – a fact that it does not appear the Judge was ever informed about), knowing that the Police would be in attendance, and knowing that the Police would bring the Press to the land as it usually does in these situations, as was admitted by Sergeant Malcolm Dey of the Hatfield Police ? Has there ever yet been a ‘private raid’ by the RSPCA, quite unknown to the public ?

The Warrant. The Warrant was unlawfully obtained. The District Judge was never told by the Police (who had been informed of this) making the application at the behest of the RSPCA that the RSPCA had standing permission to go onto the land whenever it reasonably wished and had not, therefore, been denied access at all ; nor were the District Judge or the Police told that no emergency existed on the land of any kind ; nor that a course of actions relating to railing of the paddock and animal waste disposal had been agreed and was in course of being carried out ; nor that the RSPCA had actually agreed to a further visit that never happened because of the raid carried out under the unlawful Warrant ; nor that only three weeks beforehand on 21st June 2010, RSPCA Inspector Mr W. Rippon [No. 972, RSPCA East Region] issued an “AWA 092913” form. That notice, purportedly under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, but actually with no legal authority whatever, plainly stated that the animals were contained within a suitable environment and that the environment they were kept in was clean. The Information underlying the Application for the Warrant stated that there was no running water on the site. This is factually true : but at no stage has the RSPCA ever said that running water is a pre-requisite for keeping animals on the site. Nor does it say that it is a pre-requisite for keeping animals on the site today.

To date the Chief Legal Executive of the RSPCA in Horsham (who was not involved in the application for the Warrant) has refused to apologise to the District Judge, as is his professional obligation to do, for misleading the Court (and the Hatfield Police) on matters which, had they been properly and correctly understood by the Hatfield Police and by the Judge on 12th July 2010, could not lawfully have led to the issue of the Warrant under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 and to all the consequent actions that have caused us enormous upheaval and great distress.

Mr Fred Brimley and Mrs Bridget Brimley-Vigor

The St. Francis Animal Sanctuary,

Swanley Bar, Little Heath, Potters Bar, Herts.

Phone: 07880 550716

13th August 2013

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RSPCA noses in the trough!

Press Release
For Immediate Release
15th July 2013

The RSPCA has just published its accounts – as required by the Charities Commission.  They reveal that, during 2012, the salary of the RSPCA’s highest-paid executive appears to have increased by at least £30,000.

Even the Self Help Group for Farmers, Pet Owners and Others Experiencing Difficulties with the RSPCA (The SHG) is taken aback by the brazen greed which this represents.  This has happened at a time when the RSPCA is pleading poverty and claiming to be making savings, having laid off a total of 80 employees,

The RSPCA’s new accounts also show one employee earning between £150,000 and £160,000, one earning between £140,000 and £150,000 and one earning between £120,000 and £130,000.  In the previous year, the charity’s accounts showed its highest paid employee was earning between £110,000 and £120,000.  This was at least £30,000 less than this year.  In short, the RSPCA’s highest paid employee is earning at least 25% more than the year before.

Anne Kasica of the SHG said:

It would be highly unusual for anyone to be earning more than the Chief Executive, and that has always been the position with the RSPCA.  We therefore assume that the charity’s highest paid worker is Gavin Grant.”

Whoever all these highly-paid executives are, this is outrageous.  Donations intended to help lost, sick and suffering animals have been, and are being, used to pay at least three people vastly more than last year.”

Ernest Vine of the SHG added:

This disgrace has emerged at a time when the RSPCA’s accounts indicate that their overall outgoings, spending on animal welfare and support to RSPCA branches have all dropped significantly.  We are repeatedly told that many branches and RSPCA-branded facilities are threatened with closure and we know that several have already closed.”

The dwindling number of people who still do without in order to put money in RSPCA collecting tins will be horrified at the way their sacrifices are being used.  The overwhelming majority of genuine RSPCA charity workers seem to be facing redundancy, pay cuts or freezes – as well as being as shocked as their volunteers at the charity’s extremism, meanness and political lurchings.”

“There seems to be one law for the people at the coalface, and another for the top executives in the charity’s palatial Horsham HQ.

Ends

Word Total:   385

Notes to Editors: -

For further comment please contact:

Anne Kasica on 01559 371031
Ernest Vine on 01559 370566
Mobile 0744 99 89 411.
e-mail: shg@the-shg.org

The SHG was officially formed in June 1990 and has been helping people to defend themselves and their animals from the RSPCA for over 20 years.

The national help line number is 0844 700 66 90

A copy of this and previous press releases from The SHG are online at http://shgpressreleases.wordpress.com/

Archived press releases can be found at
http://www.the-shg.org/SHGPressReleases.htm

Background information on the Self Help Group for Farmers Pet Owners and Other Experiencing Difficulties with the RSPCA can be found at http://www.the-shg.org and the SHG blog:  http://theshg.wordpress.com/

Details of further criticisms of the RSPCA can be found at the RSPCA-Animadversion website:  http://rspca-animadversion.org.uk/

 

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The SHG tells the RSPCA: Stop prosecuting children who are vulnerable

Press Release
For Immediate Release
27th January 2013

The Self Help Group for Farmers, Pet Owners and Others Experiencing Difficulties with the RSPCA (The SHG) is delighted to learn that Simon Hart MP has tabled a Parliamentary debate on the role of the RSPCA as a private prosecutor.

Anne Kasica of the SHG said:

“The way in which the RSPCA targets  vulnerable people, the elderly, the disabled and the mentally ill is already well known.”

“Now we are shining the spotlight onto the way the RSPCA is abusing the rules designed to protect children and to ensure a fair trial, apparently with the questionable aim of raising money in order to plug the gaps in their failing income streams.”

The RSPCA concluded each of their reports on a recent case in the youth court involving three young girls, one of whom is to be tried later this year,  with a request for funds.  The main article refers readers to a video on the RSPCA You Tube channel.  Ironically this video has now been removed for breaching You Tube’s Terms of Service.  The RSPCA blog, however, still carries the video which is available for download.

Anne Kasica continued:

“It would seem that You Tube has done far more to protect these children than the RSPCA, a private organisation whose charitable status is linked to the ‘promotion of kindness‘.”

In another case in August 2012, when faced with a child far too young for them to prosecute, the RSPCA did not give up.  They contacted the Youth Offending Team to ‘raise concerns about the child’s behaviour’.

This child was well under the age of 10 and is unlikely to have understood that what he had done was against the law or even wrong.

The RSPCA recently admitted that it had prosecuted at least 82 “juveniles” (i.e. children) in the last three years alone.  It is campaigning for ‘tougher penalties’ for those convicted of animal welfare offences and this includes the cases which it brings against children in the youth court.

Ernest Vine of the SHG asked:

“How can an organisation that has breached the sub judice rules on reporting on live trials and ignored the rules designed to protect children be allowed to continue to bring prosecutions?”

“There are many media reports highlighting the way that the RSPCA appears to target the very vulnerable members of society, people the CPS often choose not to prosecute,  and then sends out press releases naming elderly, disabled or mentally ill defendants, who are then sometimes harassed by Animal Rights activists.

In the case of RSPCA v C (a child) the RSPCA prosecuted a young girl for failing to take her pet cat to the vet despite the fact that her father had told her to leave it and see if it improved, and that she had no money to pay the vet or means of transport.  When they lost in the magistrates court the RSPCA appealed and lost again.  The child was acquitted and awarded her costs.

Anne Kasica said:

“It is impossible to describe the utter misery and panic of good and decent people who find themselves being dragged through the criminal justice system, often for the first time in their lives.”

“It is all very well to say that there is a right for everyone to bring a private prosecution, but there is a huge difference between an organsiation that effectively has a bottomless pit of money, that they use to ensure that they win, and an individual, especially if that individual is ill, elderly or disabled, or is struggling with a mental illness.”

“Worse, they may have believed the RSPCA publicity machine that leaves many with the impression that they are a legal enforcement agency and actually have powers to enter, inspect, remove animalls or order individuals to have their animals put down.”

“The defendant may be dependent on legal aid, or could be just above the legal aid threshold but unable to find the cash for a legal defence team.”

“As is inevitable, there have been suicides.  People have lost their jobs, sometimes after having time off work due to the stress caused by the investigation and subsequent prosecution.  Families have broken up.  All of this goes onto the NHS bill and the cost to the country is far in excess of the actual costs of the case itself.”

The SHG believes that it is clear both from the huge response, well over 7,000 signatures in just a few weeks, to the petition started by the Pedigree Dog Defence Group asking for an investigation into the activities of the RSPCA, and from the outrage expressed on internet forums,  that the public has huge concerns about the RSPCA.

Ernest Vine conlcuded:

“We hope that the debate tabled by Simon Hart MP will signal the institution of proper controls over the RSPCA and its activities.”

Ends

Word Total:   804

Notes to Editors: -

For further comment please contact:

Anne Kasica on 01559 371031
Ernest Vine on 01559 370566
Mobile 0744 99 89 411.
e-mail: shg@the-shg.org

The SHG was officially formed in June 1990 and has been helping people to defend themselves and their animals from the RSPCA for over 20 years.

The national help line number is 0844 700 66 90

A copy of this and previous press releases from The SHG are online at http://shgpressreleases.wordpress.com/

Archived press releases can be found at
http://www.the-shg.org/SHGPressReleases.htm

Background information on the Self Help Group for Farmers Pet Owners and Other Experiencing Difficulties with the RSPCA can be found at http://www.the-shg.org and the SHG blog:  http://theshg.wordpress.com/

Details of further criticisms of the RSPCA can be found at the RSPCA-Animadversion website:  http://rspca-animadversion.org.uk/

 

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