INTERNATIONAL PERSPECTIVES ON THE LINK

Escrito por National Link Coalition.

Proceedings of the National Link Coalition Roundtable

Graduate School of Social Work, University of Denver

June 10-11, 2010

Denver, Colorado



While much of the Link work to date has taken place in the U.S., the movement is gaining traction in other nations as well. Participants at the National Link Coalition Roundtable were introduced to some of the developments affecting The Link in the global arena.

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Dra. Nuria Querol i Viñas described the organization she founded in 2000, Grupo para el Estudio de la Violencia hacia Humanos y Animales (GEVHA), the Group for the Study of Violence towards Humans and Animals. The group formed due to a lack of information about The Link in Spanish and in the wake of increasing awareness of animal issues in Spain. In response to a highly popular public initiative, the Parliament of Catalonia moved to ban bullfighting in that province and several cities have approved symbolic bans against what has long been a national cultural icon. Some animal cruelty crimes are now felonies due to changes in Spain’s penal code.
GEVHA sees violence toward animals not only as a possible preamble to violence against humans, but also as part of a phenomenon of global violence. GEVHA researches the phenomenon of violence and develops violence-prevention educational programs.

She summarized a research study of prison inmates in which 41 percent had a history of animal cruelty. The study reported that the more violent the crimes against humans, the more sadistic were the crimes against animals.
GEVHA recently created an Observatory of Violence to Animals, a multidisciplinary group to provide research, education, consulting and advocacy for such issues as pet protection orders, cross-reporting and a public registry of animal abusers. Police officers will be receiving training on animal ethics, animal law, ethology, animal handling, and The Link.

The group introduced a questionnaire regarding animal violence that is given to domestic violence victims in hospital emergency rooms, and has seen its work publicized in print and TV media. She will be directing a new animal protection commission established by the city of Barcelona.

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