The Department of Well-Being and Safety (DWBS) has come under heavy criticism for issuing its Summer security alert too late.[pullquote]The DWBS made a big mistake in waiting so long to issue the alert. Many of us would call it a fatal error.”—Delma Falter, Missing Animals Registry.[/pullquote]
Yesterday’s alert, which is only the second Summer alert ever issued, warned Park Animals to be vigilant around Humans vacationing in The Park.
According to the DWBS communiqué, Park Animals should deal with Humans in a “professional” manner, refrain from befriending Human children, refuse all invitations to enter vehicles, and refuse any and all “suspicious” invitations and gifts.
“Humans tend to get sentimental and to make emotional attachments during their time off work and that makes them more likely to try to take Park Animals home with them,” the DWBS warned.
The alert is comprehensive. But critics say the delay in issuing it has cost some Animals their security and perhaps, in some cases, their lives.
“This alert should have been issued a month ago, at least. Six weeks ago would have been perfect,” says Delma Falter of The Park’s Missing Animals Registry.
Falter says that this Summer, she’s had the “very sad task” of adding names to the Registry.
“It’s a difficult thing to do. I deal with families reporting their friends, their mates, their young, missing. We try to give them hope, but the truth is many of them will never be found. And this Summer, the numbers have grown to the point where I would call it a crisis,” she said.
Other frontline workers agree.
Arrosa Katu of the Feral Cat Helpline says she and other volunteers have seen a record number of calls this year.
“I would say roughly four hundred per cent more, and during many of those calls, I’ve had to tell families to call the Missing Animals Registry,” she says.
Katu and Falter say much of this could have been avoided.
“The DWBS made a big mistake in waiting so long to issue the alert. Many of us would call it a fatal error,” says Falter.
Animals who do experience problems with Humans are encouraged to report any incidents immediately to one of the following DWBS hotlines:
Feral Cat Helpline: 1-899-33725228
Assaulted Animals Helpline: 1-899-27728583
Missing Animals Registry: 1-899-64774642
Missing Family Members Report: 1-899-32645966
Youth line (Kittens, Puppies, Cubs, etc.): 1-899-96884546
Exotic Animals Helpline: 1-899-3968427