Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Official: Fire Kennel Officer; Glynn Commissioner Angry Worker Spoke Her Mind 'In Uniform'

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Official: Fire Kennel Officer; Glynn Commissioner Angry Worker Spoke Her Mind 'In Uniform'

Article excerpt

Byline: Mike Morrison

BRUNSWICK | Glynn County Commissioner Bob Coleman called for the firing of a county employee after she defended herself and other Animal Services workers in a Times-Union story.

In a Times-Union story published Sunday, Barbara Sancomb, a kennel officer at the county's animal shelter, was defending herself and others against allegations leveled at them by a vocal group of citizens pushing for no-kill status at the animal shelter.

Sancomb said charges that conditions at the shelter were deplorable and that animals were treated inhumanely were untrue, and that achieving no-kill status at the shelter was not feasible given the county's overpopulation of stray dogs and cats.

But Coleman said Sancomb had no right to speak her mind "while in uniform."

"I took offense to the total negativity of the article," said Coleman, who is leading the charge toward no-kill. "We've been working on this as hard as we can go."

Coleman said he sent Glynn County Police Chief Matt Doering, who supervises Animal Control, an email recommending that Sancomb be fired.

"I said if she'd been a police officer she wouldn't have a job the next day," he said.

Doering responded in an email that Sancomb had the right to talk but that her opinions were her own and not of Animal Control or the county, Coleman said.

No-kill status would mean that 90 percent of the animals taken into the shelter would live by adoption, returns to owners or transfers to other animal welfare agencies.

Coleman and a small but adamant group of animal rights activists have been pushing for the change but have gotten little traction with the other commissioners.

Coleman even complained about comments that retired veterinarian Bill Disque made to the Times-Union. Disque spays and neuters animals at the shelter a few times a month.

Disque said that there are a lot more homeless animals in the county than there are people willing to adopt them.

"The root of the problem is a lack of responsibility and accountability of pet owners," he said.

Coleman said Disque had no right to express his opinion. …

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