Random thoughts

Sharing some thoughts, ideas, and some laughs

Hit the Road Brian!


On October 17th, fifty-three people having been locked out of the Board of Directors meeting at LCHS waited over 1 ½ hours to be told that their membership applications for which they had paid $50. were going to be deferred.

This is the story of another applicant.

A few weeks ago I asked Brian Narhi if he would consider becoming a member of LCHS. I know that Brian has a great deal of interest and affection for animals, particularly cats and especially his own menagerie.

I approached Brian because he is good people. He is honest, kind, intelligent and thoughtful. I knew that if he chose to become a member he is someone on whom LCHS could depend. These attributes combined with the fact that Brian is co-chair of the St Catharines Heritage Committee, a professional researcher a life long resident of St Catharines and is known and respected in the community, I believe would make Brian a very welcome addition to any membership.

Well in spite of these glowing qualifications, Brian got the boot. Brian submitted his membership application and on September 24th sent me the following confirmation.

“I e-mailed the application to Strooband, then delivered the hard copy and cheque to them at the end of the week—so it would have been received by them after their meeting.”

The meeting to which Brian refers was the September 19th Board of Directors meeting during which the 2 friends of Strooband were admitted into the fold. In actual fact, Brian’s application was in the hands of the B of D on the 19th but he had not been able to physically get to the shelter with his cheque in time for the meeting. There was a motion to accept his membership that was deferred to the next meeting. That would be the infamous meeting of October 17th, 2012.

On October 17th, there were three motions made regarding memberships.

  1. Renewing the memberships for Davidson, Davisdon, Howe and Probst – carried
  2. Accepting the 53 membership applications for new members – defeated
  3. Accepting Brian Narhi’s deferred application due the absence of payment that had been rectified.  – defeated.

  WHY? I want to know why! Why was Brian declined and others accepted. Why is someone like Brian      Narhi denied membership into LCHS when he is good enough to  Co-Chair one of the Mayor’s  committees?

How are applicants “vetted”? What excuses shall be used to deny the 53 deferred applicants and any new applicants from obtaining membership?


3 thoughts on “Hit the Road Brian!

  1. Any new applications to be approved will likely be friends of Ann, Joe, Kevin or Mary Lou. Why change now? It’s been working for them for quite awhile.

  2. I’m not a Canadian, so I’m not familiar with the laws of that country. However, I would hazard to guess that there are laws similar to those in the US regarding how organizations in general, non-profits, more specifically, and certainly registered charities must comport themselves. In New York state, nonorofit corporations must abide by their bylaws and must conform to other requirements if they are membership organizations. Even with their bylaws, state laws supersede even those. If it is an animal protection organization and granted abuse/neglect investigatory recognition, it is therefore carrying out a “public function” even though a private organization. That means they have additional obligations by law — such as our Open-Meetings Law and Freedom-of-Information Law. With the granting of status here as a 501c3 charity, it means the organization is subject to a host of Federal laws — ethics provisions, public support requirements, anti-discrimination and open records. I would consult someone knowledgeable about nonprofits and animal welfare/control in Canada. I’ve always found Canada to be even more progressive in this respect than the US. And having municipal contracts REALLY makes them subject to various open-government and accountability laws. In the mean time, I’m sure you can plant someone outside their doors to warn them that they do not serve the interests of animals and no one should donate to them or leave an animal there until they are made to answer and be accountable.

    • Hey Carol, You make some very good points for which I thank you. I have contacted a parliamentary “specialist” regarding some of the issues. Hopefully we will acquire some more knowledge and move forward. Ultimately, we may have to report the matter to the Office of the Trustee if the present B of D continues to maintain their obstructionist attitude.Any suggestions and or comments are very gratefully received. Thanks for taking the time . I note you are from Buffalo, maybe we can connect some time and have you show me around your shelter. Regards

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