Housing officer's animal welfare work awarded
Published by Max Salsbury for 24dash.com in Housing and also in Communities
RSPCA awards scheme to be bigger and better than ever
A housing officer has been recognised for her work on cases of animal neglect with an RSPCA award.
Jackie Chapman, a neighbourhood manager for Cross Keys Housing Association, was awarded the Elsie MJ Evans bronze award at the RSPCA's annual honours ceremony.
With Ms Chapman's support, and Cross Keys legal powers, the RSPCA has managed to help tenants struggling to cope care for too many animals, as well as animal hoarders.
In one case, more than 35 animals were removed from a rubbish-filled home thanks to Ms Chapman's "no-nonsense yet tactful" negotiations.
Dr James Yeates, the RSPCA’s Chief Veterinary Officer, said: “Thanks to Jackie the RSPCA was able to remove thirty five cats, three fish and one dog all which had been living amongst their own faeces, fleas and flies in 12 tonnes of rubbish.
“All the animals were signed over to the care of the RSPCA, where they could be given veterinary treatment and be rehomed.
“Success with this case came from the neighbourhood manager, local police force and the RSPCA working well together in a multi-agency approach. The tenant has received a life ban from keeping animals and this could not have been secured without Jackie’s tenacity and help.”
The Elsie MJ Evans bronze award is given in recognition of an important contribution to animal welfare or an act of outstanding kindness or bravery.
Ms Chapman said: “This is an unexpected but fantastic surprise and honour. To be part of a process to secure the safety and wellbeing of animals gives me a tremendous sense of pride and achievement.”
Channel 5 newsreader and former GMTV presenter Emma Crosby, who presented the award, said: “Jackie Chapman has smoothed the way for our inspectors into homes where the doors were previously slammed shut. She’s used her persuasive powers to encourage struggling pet owners to rehome some of their animals and, where needed, she has used the power of her housing association to issue warnings to support the RSPCA to get animals out of horrific conditions.
“She is a shining example of the good that can be achieved when groups like housing associations and the RSPCA join forces.”
Cross Keys Homes has previously won a Community Animal Welfare Footprint (CAWF) from the RSPCA.
The CAWF scheme encourages local authorities and housing providers to adopt and share good practice to improve the welfare of animals in social housing.