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August 2017

Introduction:  This Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) is entered into by all members of the Metro Denver Animal Welfare Alliance (MDAWA) to demonstrate commitment to the alliance’s mission, principles and membership expectations.

Purpose:  This MOA outlines the commitments and expectations for MDAWA members in order to facilitate cooperation, collaboration, coordination, and effective communication between all members and with the public and in support of our mission to foster collaborative efforts of our members to promote humane care for companion animals in our community.

Membership:  Membership is generally limited to not-for-profit organizations and governmental agencies. In addition, shelters, rescue groups and fosters must have PACFA licenses, if applicable. For PACFA-licensed organizations requesting membership in MDAWA, an open records request will be done to check for any issues with PACFA.

Membership Commitments:  The following commitments are set forth to ensure the viability, effectiveness and positive image of MDAWA.

  1. All sheltering members (including rescue groups and fosters) must report PACFA data on an annual basis to MDAWA. Consolidated MDAWA data, such as adoptions and returns to owners, may be published on the MDAWA website.
  2. Members shall use terminology that is clear, positive in tone, and builds understanding among animal care and control agencies, veterinary professionals, and the public.
  3. Members shall not use the terms “no kill” or “high kill” or state that they “rescue animals from shelters.”   
  4. In the spirit of collaboration, members will use positive language when communicating with the public or media about MDAWA activities or other MDAWA members. This principle will be reflected on members’ websites and in all printed materials.
  5. Members will attend a minimum of three MDAWA meetings per calendar year and actively support MDAWA activities by participating in networking groups, providing in-kind services, participating in cooperative events, and the like. Exceptions will be considered upon request.
  6. Members will be represented at MDAWA meetings by the organization’s executive director or representative.

If an organization fails to meet the requisite commitments the organization may be designated “inactive.” An inactive organization will no longer be publicly identified as a member of MDAWA nor be permitted to refer to itself as an MDAWA member. The collective membership of MDAWA will determine when a member will be designated “inactive.” Furthermore, any entity whose membership would not reflect positively on MDAWA can be declined membership or have its membership revoked by a majority vote of MDAWA.

Members are encouraged to publicly identify themselves as members of the Metro Denver Animal Welfare Alliance to promote understanding and awareness of MDAWA in the community. Members will be listed on the MDAWA website, which will include links to members’ websites, and in other MDAWA documents, such as the MDAWA Pet Resource Guide. Likewise, members’ sites will link to the MDAWA website.

Duration of Agreement:  This agreement does not expire, but may be updated and periodically amended with the concurrence of a majority of members. This agreement will be ratified annually by each MDAWA member or whenever a member organization appoints a new CEO or executive director. This agreement may be terminated at any time upon request of a member organization.