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November 20, 2009

The Honorable Micah Kellner
The Honorable Thomas K. Duane
834 Legislative office building
Albany, NY 12248

Dear Assembly Member Kellner and Senator Duane,

We are writing to thank you for your decision to introduce "Oreo's Law" in the New York State legislature: a law modeled on California's Hayden law, which makes it illegal for an animal shelter to kill an animal who a rescue organization is willing to save. There are thousands upon thousands of animals killed by animal shelters throughout the country every year, despite the offers of no kill shelters, sanctuaries, and rescue groups willing to give these animals the second chance they so richly deserve, but are prevented from doing so by shelter directors who deny them without having to explain why. The shelters and large national animal protection organizations have argued that the killing of animals in shelters is unavoidable. They use euthanasia as a means of cost control and have no responsibility to explain their decisions. If we're to believe that they compassionately feel that euthanasia is only a last option, why would they refuse the offer of a no-kill shelter to take an animal off of their hands when they know that the animal would either find a forever home or spend the rest of their natural lives being cared for. Oreo's law will make sure that they reconsider that offer.

We have an opportunity to better ourselves as a people through the lessons that this horrible situation has taught us. We wouldn't want to waste it on making it into a soapbox for us to stand on and complain about how these larger organizations handle their "business". There is a greater goal, a greater good, and we support the steps, small and large, that lead toward that end. We believe that Oreo's law is such a step. We're proud to support it and to support you for having the compassion to speak out for those who don't have the ability to speak for themselves. Sincerely,

Rob Thomas
(Musician and Vice-President
Sidewalk Angels Foundation)
Marisol Thomas
(President - Sidewalk Angels Foundation)