Two groups offering aid for shelter in Yadkin NC


Mar 11, 2001
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August 7, 2002

Two groups offering aid for shelter in Yadkin

Consumer Freedom, PETA set conditions before giving grants

By Amy Frazier, Winston-Salem Journal


Two opposing national organizations - an animal-rights group and an organization that supports consumers' right to eat meat - have offered financial assistance for Yadkin County's new animal shelter.

Both offers come with strings attached.

The Center for Consumer Freedom, which is based in Washington, is offering Yadkin County $15,000 for the shelter under the stipulation that the county reject a similar offer of $15,000 from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

PETA's $15,000 offer carries the contingency that the county stop euthanizing animals at the shelter with carbon monoxide and use lethal injections instead.

Yadkin hasn't accepted either offer.

The financial offers come as the county is planning to replace its open-air shelter.

Some community members and PETA leaders have complained about the shelter's location at the landfill and said that conditions were unfit for animals.

County officials say that a new shelter would cost about $150,000. The commissioners agreed last spring to put $75,000 toward a new shelter if the community matches that amount.

Soon after, PETA made its offer. The offer from the Center for Consumer Freedom came last week.

The center commended Yadkin County Commissioner Brent Hunter for his criticisms of PETA.

"PETA has a history of financial aid to violent elements of the animal-rights and environmental movements," Richard Bermon, the executive director of the Center for Consumer Freedom, wrote Hunter in a letter dated Aug. 5.

Hunter said in May that he doesn't want the county to accept the PETA money because he believes that the group has links to domestic terrorism.

"I cannot, in good faith, accept an offer from a group like PETA when they support and finance groups that engage in arson, harassment and vandalism in the name of their political agenda," Hunter was quoted as saying in a news release from the Center for Consumer Freedom.

Jeff Kerr, the general counsel for PETA, called the allegations by Hunter and the Center for Consumer Freedom "ridiculous."

He said that the group, formerly called the Guest Choice Network, represents various interests with which PETA disagrees.

PETA officials said they were pleasantly surprised that the Center for Consumer Freedom has offered money for the shelter.

"They usually do things that put people in the hospitals," said Daphna Nachminovitch, a spokeswoman for PETA. "They represent meat, tobacco and the fast-food industry."

PETA officials say they have not heard from the county since making their offer.

On Monday, commissioners debated whether to accept the money from the Center for Consumer Freedom and decided to delay a decision.

"I like the stipulation of not accepting from PETA. I don't have any respect for them," said Chairman Thomas Wooten.

Commissioner Josh Baity disagreed, saying he was concerned that rejecting PETA's offer might offend some county residents.

Commissioners said that before making a decision, they need to hear from residents who are raising money for a new shelter.

• Amy Frazier can be reached at 727-7481 or at

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