Canadian Violence Link Coalition

The relationship between violence against people and animals is commonly known as the Violence Link. Evidence-based research shows that violence against animals and violence against people are not distinct and separate problems. Rather, they are part of a larger pattern of violent crimes that often co-exist. Cases of partner abuse, gang violence, youth crime, assault, homicide, sexual assault and child abuse also commonly include animal abuse.

The Canadian Violence Link Coalition (CVLC) was formed in 2018 as a result of issues brought forward at Humane Canada’s 2017 Canadian Violence Link Conference. The Coalition brings together professionals working to prevent and address violence against people and animals in more than 10 Canadian sectors and is committed to advancing awareness, education and training about the link between violence against humans and violence against animals. Its goal is to introduce violence prevention and intervention strategies across the country and to establish policies and practices that make our communities safer.

Members of the Coalition Coordinating Committee

Tracy Porteous – Executive Director, Ending Violence Association of BC
Marcie Moriarty – Chief Prevention and Enforcement Officer, BC SPCA
Dallas Mack – Ontario Crown Counsel
Carrolyn Johnston – Acting Executive Director, Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women
Destiny Bedwell – Communications and Marketing Coordinator, Ontario 211 Service
Barbara Cartwright – Chief Executive Officer, Humane Canada (A/CEO Derek deLouche until Jan 2019) 
Pierre Sadik – Lawyer, National Centre for the Prosecution of Animal Cruelty
Teena Stoddart – Sergeant, Ottawa Police Service
Dr. Andrew Sparling, DVM – Board Member, Ontario Veterinary Medical Association
Christine Hartig – Strategic Support Officer, By-law and Regulatory Services, City of Ottawa
Kaitlin Bardswich – Communications and Development Coordinator, Women’s Shelters Canada
Dayna Rose-Desmarais – President, SafePet Ottawa
Frances Wach – Executive Director, Saskatchewan SPCA
Melinda Mennie – Stakeholder Relations Officer, BC SPCA

Canadian Violence Link Coalition Projects Underway:

  1. Violence Link Training for police officers across the country
  2. An amendment to section 160 of the Criminal Code of Canada (bestiality)
  3. Amending ViCLAS book to add animal abuse questions
  4. Amending threat assessment questionnaires to add animal abuse questions
  5. The National Centre for the Prosecution of Animal Cruelty’s 2018 Crown prosecutor training
  6. Hosting the second-ever Canadian Violence Link Conference in 2019
  7. Judicial training on the Violence Link, spearheaded by The Honourable Justice Michael A. Kelen (retired)
  8. Animal abuse statistics recorded by Statistics Canada (police statistics)