Court asked to review limits on B.C. conservation officers’ power to kill wildlife

The case stems from when a bear cub was put down in 2016

An animal advocacy group is asking the country’s top court to review a previous ruling that found B.C. conservation officers have the “unlimited authority” to kill wildlife.

The group, known as the Fur-Bearers, filed their application for leave to appeal in the Supreme Court of Canada on Monday, following the B.C. Supreme Court’s dismissal of a similar lawsuit late last year.

According to the B.C.-based group, a conservation officer euthanized a black bear cub near Dawson Creek in 2016, even though staff at a wildlife centre in Smithers had agreed to take it in.

The group argues the cub was “vulnerable [and] orphaned” and posed no danger to anyone.

Last year, the B.C. Supreme Court judge said it was “inconceivable” that lawmakers meant to prevent conservation officers’ powers to killing animals that are “at large and are likely to harm.”

The group said it was worried officers would kill animals in circumstances most people would find “inappropriate, and even immoral.”

Executive director Lesley Fox questioned why the officers do not have an external or third-party review. The 2016 case was reviewed twice internally, the group said, with both reviews supporting the decision to kill the bear cub.

“We believe that conservation officers, who are law enforcement agents and not wildlife experts or rehabilitators, should not be the only ones determining whether an animal should be sent to rehabilitation for care and release, or killed,” said Fox.

“Canadians see animals as sentient beings that must be treated with compassion and in accordance with shared values.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

LETTERS: Jet boat traffic, coal mining

Jet boat traffic on St. Mary River Dear Editor The St Marys… Continue reading

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Thoughtful plan for reintroducing visitors to Kimberley required: Mayor McCormick

As the City begins the process of reopening, Mayor Don McCormick wants… Continue reading

Kimberley Scouts participate in ‘Camp In’

What is Scouting about if not the opportunity to go camping? During… Continue reading

Snow expected to hit West Kootenay passes overnight on Thursday

Up to 15 cm of snow could fall on Highway 3 between Paulson summit to Kootenay Pass by Friday morning

VIDEO: Procession to honour Snowbirds Capt. Jennifer Casey comes to Halifax

Snowbirds service member died in a crash in Kamloops one week ago

Bike shops busier than ever, but owners worry about stock supply issues

Uptick in cyclists brings new challenges for shops

RCMP facing ‘systemic sustainability challenges’ due to provincial policing role

Provinces, territories and municipalities pay anywhere from 70 to 90 per cent of the cost of the RCMP’s services

One man dead after standoff with Chilliwack RCMP

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the RCMP’s role in the death

B.C. employers worry about safety, cash flow, second wave in COVID-19 restart

A survey found 75 per cent of businesses worry about attracting customers

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Ex-BC Greens leader Andrew Weaver says province came close to early election

Disagreement centred on the LNG Canada project in northern B.C.

Canada’s NHL teams offer options to season-ticket holders

Canadian teams are offering refunds, but also are pushing a number of incentives to let them keep the money

B.C. premier says lessons to learn from past racism during response to pandemic

B.C. formally apologized in the legislature chamber in 2008 for its role in the Komagata Maru tragedy

Most Read