Monday, February 26, 2007

Citizen Safety is Never a Waste of Money

Remember the bill that requires states to include pets in their disaster plans or risk losing federal funds? Remember the statistics citing that as many as 44% of those who chose not to evacuate for Hurricane Katrina remained in danger because they would not leave their faithful, furry companions?

Now, some States and Counties are doing the best they can to ensure the safety of their citizens in the event of an emergency. Arlington County, Virginia, has allocated 10% of a Homeland Security grant to purchase and stock an emergency trailer that will be used to transport supplies needed to set up a temporary pet shelter in the event of a disaster.

Of course, as expected, some citizens are grumbling over what a waste of money this is and that it would be better spent on the people of the County rather than the pets. However, if you take just a moment to review what we have learned from Hurricane Katrina, it is obvious that having a plan for Arlington pets is, in fact, helping to ensure the safety and welfare of Arlington citizens, as well. If New Orleans had also had a plan for pets, wouldn't there be 44% fewer people left in danger?

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