Comm on Animals and the Law Meeting

Wednesday, January 24, 2018
1:30 PM - 5:00 PM
Total MCLE Credits: 3.50 (Professional Practice 2.50, Ethics 1.00)
Sutton Center, 2nd Floor


ANIMAL CRUELTY 101: Why All Animals Are Not Treated Equally Under the Law – Farm Animals to Companion Animals, Litigation to Advocacy, and Everything in Between.

“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others." - George Orwell, Animal Farm

While animal cruelty can be perpetrated against all animals, not all animals are treated equally under the law. This program will delve into several aspects of animal cruelty law in New York State. Those who attend will leave with a better understanding of the current status of animal cruelty laws in New York State, as well as applicable federal laws. Attendees will learn why all animals are not treated equally under the law and why companion animals, farm animals, and wildlife are subject to different protections. The program will also fully explore the multiple ethical considerations that must be taken into account when prosecuting an animal cruelty case. Finally, attendees will leave with tools to help them advocate for more effective animal cruelty laws.


1:00–1:30 p.m.

1:30–1:35 p.m.
Moderator: Jennifer Chin, Esq.

1:35–2:35 p.m.
Understanding the Laws: A Discussion of Existing Animal Cruelty Laws in New York and Around the Country
This portion of the program will cover animal cruelty laws in New York as well as applicable federal laws. The presentation will highlight how different animals are treated under animal cruelty laws, with a particular focus on protecting the more “uncommon” victims of animal abuse, including farm animals and wildlife. 
Speaker: Sherry L. Ramsey, Esq.

2:35–3:35 p.m.
Ethics in Animal Crimes Prosecutions
This portion of the program will delve into the ethical aspects of decision-making in the investigation, arrest, and prosecution stages of animal abuse cases.  Using case studies and practical examples, against the backdrop of the NY Rules of Professional Conduct, the presenter will explain the abilities and limitations of government authority to interject into various abuse scenarios.  The presentation will also cover ethics in public communication regarding animal abuse cases.
Speaker: Jed L. Painter, Esq.

3:35–3:45 p.m.
Refreshment Break

3:35–4:45 p.m.
Advocating for More Effective Animal Cruelty Laws
This portion of the program will explore recent legislative efforts to improve animal cruelty laws in New York. The presentation will cover how lawyers can advocate for change and what else can be done to ensure that animal cruelty laws are effectively protecting companion animals, farm animals, wildlife, and other animals. 
Speaker: Stacy Wolf, Esq.

4:45–5:00 p.m.
Q&A Session
Moderator: Jennifer Chin, Esq.

5:00 p.m.

Amy M. Pontillo, Esq.
Division of Professional and Court Services
Office of ADR Programs
New York, New York

Ashlee K. Cartwright, Esq.
The Salvation Army, Legal Department
West Nyack, New York

Natalie A. Carraway, Esq.

Family Court Support Magistrate
Herkimer County Family Court
Herkimer, New York

PANELISTS (in alphabetical order)
Jennifer Chin, Esq.
Vice President of Legal Advocacy
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)
New York, New York

Jed L. Painter, Esq.
Assistant District Attorney
Nassau County District Attorney’s Office
Mineola, New York

Sherry L. Ramsey, Esq.
Attorney at Law
New York, New York

Stacy Wolf, Esq.
Senior Vice President, Anti-Cruelty Group
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)
New York, New York