Love and concern for animals belie false accusations

Dear Editor:

When I accepted the directorship of the Hudson County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, I changed the public name to The Assisi Center. This was to convey the message that we would take the formerly disenfranchised non-profit sector agency to what we are–a millennial environmental life center. I had done thorough research on the shelter before accepting any role there and especially because of the many newspaper articles about all of the “problems” at the animal shelter.

My research and my subsequent involvement have shown me that. While conditions at the place were unacceptable to anyone who cares for living creatures, those conditions were a direct result of the changes in the society of Hudson County and Jersey City, as those changes have affected every not for profit agency in the county and I will expand on that topic in future writings. What I want to address here and now is in direct response to recent articles in another local newspaper regarding “charges” brought against an employee of the Assisi Center. Specifically, that newspaper wrote two articles concerning this employee’s “failure to appear in court” on two separate occasions. Well, what the paper failed to report was that the first appearance had been postponed by appropriate action in the court and that the employee had never received notice of the second appearance because he had moved his residence and the court never defined his new residence. Again, the employee and his attorney appeared as soon as notified and that case will be heard appropriately as well.

However, my point in writing this letter is to reaffirm a truth. I researched all of the employees at the shelter and I found this young man worthy of remaining as an employee of my operation there. I find him personally and professionally worthy of employment within our stated mission and daily functions. It is evident that he cares for my animals and of even greater notice, my animals care very much for him. I offer this information about Hector Rosario, not in his defense, because I believe he is completely innocent of any wrongdoing. Rather I offer this because of the fact that the newspaper chose to print one side of the story and I believe that the entire truth needs to be told, especially since one of the charges regards “animal cruelty involving his personal dogs.”

If you do not know me, you may take my words as you will and I respectfully request that you merely await the truth of the court. However, if you do know me, then you know categorically that I would not associate personally with anyone who would abuse an animal in any fashion and would absolutely never have a person in my employ and working with The Center’s resident animals who doesn’t share my love and concern for them.

I am beyond gratitude and appreciation that we live in this society of freedom. One of the downsides of modern America, however, is a proclivity for less than honestly motivated persons to be free to make accusations against anyone for almost anything, with basis or without. In this particular case, I feel responsible to make these statements on behalf of Mr. Rosario and, even more, on behalf of all of us at The Assisi Center. There is too much good happening here and there is too much work to be done to allow our efforts to be deterred or marred by the devious drivel of those who resent us.

Thomas Hart
Executive Director


© 2000, Newspaper Media Group