Mayor Rawlings-Blake Launches “Show Your Soft Side” Campaign to Prevent Animal Abuse and Neglect

Crest of the City of Baltimore

Stephanie Rawlings-Blake
Mayor,
Baltimore City
250 City Hall - Baltimore Maryland 21202
(410) 396-3835 - Fax: (410) 576-9425

Better Schools. Safer Streets. Stronger Neighborhoods.

Mayor Rawlings-Blake Issues a Local State of Emergency for Baltimore City In Advance of Winter Snow Storm

City leaders are urging residents to take steps now to be prepared for possible severe weather

BALTIMORE, Md. (January 21, 2016)—Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake issued a local state of emergency, effective at 4:00 pm today, as the City prepares for an upcoming snow storm. Forecasters have issued a blizzard warning starting Friday night and continuing through the weekend, with the potential for more than a foot of snow and high winds.

As a precautionary measure, City leaders are urging residents to take steps now to be prepared for the storm, as well as potential power outages. For more information on emergency preparedness, residents are encouraged to go to the Mayor’s Office of Emergency Management at emergency.baltimorecity.gov.

The state-of-emergency declaration is intended to assist with preparation and activation of emergency planning. Currently, city operations are operating as normal. If there are any changes due to severe weather conditions, further notifications will be made.

The City's Emergency Operations Center will be activated starting at 9:00 am Friday. The City's agencies have been planninng and meeting all week to ensure Baltimore is prepared for the upcoming storm.

Emergency Operations Officials are suggesting the following:

  • Have at least three days of water on hand for each person in your home
  • Check your flashlights and battery-powered radios to make sure they have fresh batteries
  • Keep your pets indoors
  • Review your medical prescriptions to be sure that you have enough medications to last a week

Check on your neighbors – particularly the elderly and vulnerable – and see if they need any help with storm preparations   

Mayor was joined by Orioles outfielder Adam Jones and MMA fighter John Rallo.

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake was joined by Council President Bernard “Jack” Young, Baltimore Orioles outfielder Adam Jones, MMA fighter John Rallo, members of the Mayor’s Anti-Animal Abuse Advisory Commission, and concerned residents and business leaders to launch the “Show Your Soft Side” campaign. The campaign was developed to reduce the incidence of animal abuse in Baltimore, and features acknowledged “hard” men of Baltimore with their pets. Baltimore Ravens linebacker Jarret Johnson is also helping with the campaign, but could not attend today's announcement.

“It is an honor to stand with so many people willing to give their time and resources to help put an end to animal abuse,” said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. “Together, we will reach out to young people in Baltimore to tell them that abusing a helpless animal is a sign of weakness, not strength.”

The campaign was organized by local businesswoman, Sande Riesett. Working with the Commission, she conceived the campaign and brought other local businesses on board to provide in-kind donations. Donations come from the following corporate sponsors: Eddie’s of Roland Park, Fullmoon Marketing & Events, Kirk Designs, Inc., and Media Works, Ltd.

With this new campaign, the Mayor’s Anti-Animal Abuse Advisory Commission hopes to change the mindset of young people in Baltimore who view the maiming and torturing of defenseless dogs and cats as a sign of toughness. The campaign puts forth a very different message—that “being a man” has many facets, including a soft side when it comes to animals. Research shows that people who abuse pets also commit violent crimes against people.

“Our loyal animal friends brighten our days and show us unconditional love. These creatures are more than just furry animals; they are cherished members of our families,” added City Council President Bernard C. “Jack” Young. “But for too many people, dogs and cats are targets rather than objects of affection. This is simply disgusting and wrong.”

For more information, please visit http://www.facebook.com/ShowYourSoftSide.

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