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USA: What Pennsylvania Residents Must Know About Angel’s Law

Posted by African Press International on August 8, 2013

Pennsylvania has been on the back foot as far as animal laws and issues are concerned. The alarming number of animal cruelty cases in the commonwealth must be taken seriously by lawmakers. The general consensus is that only by enforcing stringent laws on animal abuse can we hope to deter violent individuals from committing heinous acts. Angel’s law – a landmark bill – aims to increase the grading for all offenses related to animal cruelty to misdemeanor offenses.

What exactly does the bill propose?

Bill no.760 – Angel’s Law – amends Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses), and proposes raising summary offenses conducted under Section 511 (Cruelty to Animals) to a misdemeanor 3. The legislation also moves up the grading for the offense of killing, maiming or disfiguring a domestic animal or fowl, from a second degree misdemeanor to a first degree misdemeanor. Offenses committed subsequently would be deemed a felony of the third degree.

The bill also gives police and humane society officers the means and tools to charge offenders. This power can be useful in bringing abusers to light and discouraging them from attempting such acts. By acting as a strong deterrent against animal cruelty, Angel’s Law can protect the rights of innocent creatures.

An overview of changes

The proposed changes are described under different sub-sections of 5511.

–         Anyone found guilty of the acts described under section (a) – killing, maiming, poisoning or disfiguring domestic and zoo animals – can face a fine of no less than $500 or $1000. Depending on the offense, offenders can also be awarded a 2-year jail sentence.

–         Actions involving the sale or coloring of rabbits under two months of age or fowl under one month of age will be considered a misdemeanor of the third degree.

–         Individuals found guilty of intentional cruelty to animals under care – veterinary or otherwise – will face third-degree misdemeanor charges.

–         A misdemeanor of third degree also applies to the selling or using of disabled horses, transportation of animals in a cruel manner, or riding/leading/working oxen, mules, horses or mares for more than 15 hours in a 20-hour period.

–         Individuals found guilty of cutting the whole or part of a dog’s ear or vocal chords will face a third degree misdemeanor charge

–         A misdemeanor of the third degree will also apply to individuals found guilty of maiming or killing homing pigeons, and skinning and selling/buying pelts of cats and dogs.

By showing your support for this crucial legislation, you can help ensure a peaceful co-existence between humans and animals.


Written by Jen Buck – Animal Rights Activists and PAWS Supporter –


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Kenya: Dealing with jiggers

Posted by African Press International on April 16, 2013

Jiggers have continued to wreak havoc in many lives in the rural schools. A number of school going children have had to drop out of school because they are unable to walk.

A Non-Governmental organization Rise Up decided to ease this problem at Khwiroro primary school in Kimilili district of Bungoma county by holding an anti-jigger campaign that saw them treated in an exercise that exposed their ordeals that have negatively affected their concentration in class.

The vibrant initiative graced by Rise up Director Jim Nduruchi,saw over fifty infested pupils removed jiggers and the later treated one after the other with disinfectants with some having worse situations where the jiggers were found to have infested their hands and even to the extent of their mouth.
According to Rise Up we Director Mr.Nduruchi, the exercise was to ensure innocent pupils are given a chance to lead a comfortable life and enable them concentrate in class a situation that has been really affected by the jigger menace throughout the county.
However, the parents were also challenged to maintain high levels of cleanliness at their homes saying it will help a great deal in fighting jigger infestation. Mr.Nduruchi says teachers should sensitize pupils on standard hygiene and embark on a sustained drive to bring the situation under control. “You have to clean up your houses thoroughly, smear them with cow dung, bath your children on a daily basis as it will help you keep the jiggers away,” advised Nduruchi.
In addition, he lashed out at other organizations that has shown up claiming to be involved in anti- jigger campaigns in the community saying they are doing sub standard services of only telling infected people to deep their feet in chemicals without first removing jiggers from them.
Kimilili District Rise- Up Chairman Wanyonyi Bwisa promised that the Rise Up organization will conduct a door to door anti- jigger campaign so as to reach those who fear to show up in public to have an exclusive treatment.
The chairperson also urged the government to facilitate the carrying out of a comprehensive baseline survey on the number of pupils infected with jiggers in the country. Mr.Wanyonyi says the survey would help gather data on the number of children who drop out of school annually due to the horrific drama.
The affected areas as the research conducted by the Rise up are Chebukwabi, Khwiroro and parts of Kamusinga “ we are working on a program of ensuring we tour all the affected areas to provide our services to the benefit of our community” promised Mr.Wanyonyi. Ahadi Trust anti jiggers campaign ambassador Cecilia Mwangi two years back started the campaigns that caught the nation off guard.
Through her campaign, the Ministry of Education had also risen to the reality of the jiggers’ problem.
Since Ahadi trust raised the issue many other organizations have been visiting homes and schools of people infested with jiggers and offering food, clothing and medical assistance.

In Bumula constituency where the jiggers menace is reported to be very high, the area former Member of Parliament, Bifwoli Wakoli, had earlier commissioned a study to be carried out in all learning institutions, to find out what could be done to eradicate this problem.

A study carried out in Bumula District of Bungoma County has shown that all the primary schools in the area consistently record dropout cases, citing that most of the jigger infested pupils were avoiding being laughed at by their colleagues.

According to research, the major cause is said to be poor hygiene conditions. The most visible effect of the attack is the inability to walk easily due to the pain in the affected areas of the body especially the legs.
It also includes inability to carry out normal daily activities and the stigmatization by other people.However; this also leads to loss of self-esteem that result from stigmatization. Infections such as HIV/Aids may also be passed between patients sharing same pins.
The treatment of the infection involves the extraction of the entire insect. The breaking of the jigger is likely to cause inflammation and other infections. The breaking of jigger is likely to cause inflammation and other infection thus is recommended for the victim to soak the feet in an alcoholic solution such as hydrogen peroxide or dettol and savlon.
Poor people living in unhygienic dwellings get jiggers because of the unsanitary nature of the dwellings.
This renders the poor unable to rise out of poverty or makes them even poorer. They are however trapped in vicious cycle of poverty for a long time unless timely and appropriate intervention breaks the cycle. The jigger is a parasite capable of visiting untold misery on victims more so children.
The jigger vicious cycle is among the easiest to break because it mostly afflicts small populations of uneducated poor in endemic zones. The jigger and poverty vicious cycle can be broken through cost-effective intervention almost any angle.
This can be effected through improved hygiene and sanitation in homes to eradicate fleas creating better housing with smooth environment where the fleas cannot hide.



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