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Florida Legislation Proposes Animal Abuse Registry

Dog in poundFlorida lawmakers are looking to pass a bill requiring those who have been convicted of animal abuse to be registered in a statewide registry.

House Bill 871, would not only register convicted animal abusers, but would prevent abusers from purchasing or adopting animals in the future, according to Fox 4.

The registry would work in the same manner as a sex offender registry. The offender’s information would be available along with their picture. It would be made available to all shelters, pet stores, and breeders.

The bill would also make it a requirement that the registry is checked before any animal is purchased or rescued.

If passed, HB 871 would take effect starting July 1, according to the Palm Beach Post.

In 2016, counties began enacting animal abuser registries. Hillsborough County and Tampa both created registers, as well as a handful of New York counties, and Cook County in Illinois, according to The Washington Post.

And in January 2016, Tennessee enacted a statewide registry, the first state to do so.

The push to make animal abuser registries statewide, however, is in the effort to keep those convicted of animal abuse away from getting animals in other counties.

When county registries can only prohibit someone from buying or adopting an animal in that specific county, statewide will prohibit them from buying or adopting an animal throughout the entire state.

Hopefully more legislation like HB 871 will be passing along the House and Senate floor in the near future, and more states begin the process of creating animal abuser registries to help prevent recurring abuse.

If each state enacted some form of legislation similar to HB 871 animal abuse could even be combated at a national level.

And that would be a big win for all of our furry friends.



Author: Amber Kahwaji

Amber is a SmartFem writer and correspondent who is currently working toward her degree in broadcast journalism from the Walter Cronkite school at ASU. She is fascinated by investigative journalism and documentary filmmaking.

Amber on the go: When Amber is not at the anchor desk for Cronkite News, or in front of the camera interviewing Scottsdale’s elite for SmartFem Entertainment, she can be found researching serial killers or binge watching HBO GO. A die-hard fan of films and old Hollywood, Amber loves to get lost in classic movies like Breakfast at Tiffany’s and Casablanca.

Trained in acting Amber’s passion is to be in front of the camera, sharing stories and taking viewers with her every step of the way.

Follow Amber at  @amberkahwaji

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