Objectives and Tenets
Written by MFOA   
Thursday, 07 April 2005

Inclusive

Welcome those wishing to help animals whether they are pure animal protection advocates or not; realizing  one issue can bring a person into the movement, we welcome that interest and support knowing the experience in helping in one issue leads to greater knowledge and understanding of the many other issues affecting animals. Most effective when animal welfare, animal protection and animal rights advocates come together.   

Legislatively Focused

Monitor all Maine animal bills; submit legislation; maintain a presence in the legislature process; lobbying; public and legislative issue campaigns; member "Action Alert."

Credibility

Being a recognized voice for animals in Maine by working with animal advocates, the legislature and the media. Having a state-wide organization and presence with an active seven-member board and fifteen District Coordinators. Issues / legislative campaigns and ballot initiative referendum tested.

Organize as One Voice

Defined and disciplined in approach, no personal agendas. Encouraging and organizing state-wide involvement of animal protection advocates and activists, animal associations, humane societies, wildlife conservationists, shelters, and legislators to act and speak as one to most effectively affect issues pertaining to animals in Maine.

Politically Engaged

Focused contact with lawmakers to advance animal protection issues. Recruiting, endorsing and actively supporting animal-friendly legislators; as well as campaigning against particularly non animal-friendly legislators who block animal protection legislation.  See Working the Politic below.  

Moderate

Working within the system, the legislature and political elements. Providing a thoughtful and measured approach to advocacy and action. Do not want to be perceived as a "radical animal rights" group.

Educationally Focused

Provide information on all issues affecting animals; outreach programs; research; educational materials. MFOA office is a resource center on animal issues for members, the public, legislators and the media.

Determination of Campaigns

  • Level of need / number of animals involved
  • Precedents in other states
  • Resources to organize campaign
  • Strength of opponent
  • Degree of support from the public and the media
  • Likelihood of mounting a successful campaign

Working the Politic

  • Tracking animal-related legislation (from printing of bills to final action)
  • Information and internet linkage; ‘Action Alerts; website
  • Inform and mobilize member calls and letters to legislative committee members
  • Working with other state and national animal protection organizations and groups
  • Legislative materials and flyers for House and Senate desks
  • Press conferences
  • General lobbying
  • Monitoring legislative voting records and supporting and endorsing animal-friendly legislators