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Debbie and Connie proved to be a


formidable team, as they met face-to-face for the first time during the ceremonial signing of the bill into law by Governor Rick Scott in April. The bill will give a Judge more lati- tude and freedom in sentencing abusers to jail while also preventing them from having contact with or owning animals, at the court’s discretion. “God gives me some amazing powers. He gives me the confidence to see things in different ways and to get my point across,” said Connie. “I am a survivor and I have to help those who are unable to help themselves. It’s who I am.”


U Y


Connie Johnson also founded Florida Big Dog Rescue, Wellborn, Florida. She was instrumental in


helping Aimee Sadler open a Florida chapter of Dogs Playing for Life. Connie’s political advisory volunteer work also takes her to Washington D.C. several times a year. “The most socially well-balanced


dogs I've met are dogs of the home- less,” she told us. “They are the world to each other, and are used to sleeping in the streets with people walking over them.” When she visits D.C., she always makes a point of stopping by DuPont Circle, where many of the homeless and their dogs hang out. Of Special Note: Also helpful to


The New Barker on reporting updates during this legislative session, were Kate McFall with the Humane Society of the United States and Christine Dorchak of GREY2K USA. Moreover, we are grateful to Dylan Fisher, Debbie Taylor Darino, Frank Fabrizio—Chief of Police at Ponce Inlet


Parker, Connie’s five pound Chi/Rat Terrier mix.


Police Department, Michele Lazarow— Hallandale Beach Vice Mayor and cham- pion of the puppy mill ban in Florida and Jason Holloway—Legislative Assistant to State Senator Darryl Rouson. All of these knowledgeable, approachable activists and citizens helped ensure that our post- ings on The New Barker social media platforms and blogs, were factual and properly worded. The movement to ban Greyhound


racing in Florida will be put to the voters in November. A new campaign to get out the vote, called “Protect Dogs-Yes on 13” will encompass campaign strategy, online protocols and grassroots advocacy. As it stands, the racing ban on the ballot should be numbered ‘13.’ Be sure to follow GREY2k USA on social media for updates or visit GREY2KUSA.org Also follow the Animal Defense


Coalition, a lobbying and animal advocacy organization that introduces animal welfare legislation and enforces existing legislation. AnimalDefenseCoalition.org


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www.TheNewBarker.com


Spring 2018 THE NEW BARKER 25


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