New York’s City Council passed legislation this week to create an animal abusers registry.
Any resident convicted of animal fighting, abandonment or aggravated cruelty will be ordered to register within 5 days of sentencing or immediately after being released from prison. Anyone failing to register or who owns an animal while on the registry will face up to 1 year in prison and a fine.
First time offenders will be prohibited from owning, residing with, or intentionally engaging in any physical contact with any animal for 5 years, subsequent offenders for 10.
Shelters, pet shops and other entities that sell or adopt animals will have to consult the registry before any transaction.
In addition to this, the Animal League Defense Fund is creating the United States first national animal abusers registry, named “Do Not Adopt.”
The animal welfare group has been asking states to provide public data of convicted animal abusers and hopes to finish the registry by the end of the year.
“Most shelters have their own ‘Do Not Adopt’ lists that they circulate amongst each other. But we wanted to make sure that our site is only populated with data that comes from official sources,” said Chris Green, ALDF director of legislative affairs.
States will have the option to opt into the registry to provide information on the convicted animal abusers.