Friday, 15 October 2010

Dogwatch Van: Greenwich Council bites back

A couple of weeks ago I posted on this Greenwich Council "dog watch" van I'd spotted loitering around Kidbrooke Green:


Inspired by this one reader submitted a Freedom of Information request to the Council asking:

  • The rationale/decision-making process behind this initiative
  • Its timescale - length of the operation and its operational hours
  • The locations of the van, past and future
  • Cost of the operation
  • Success metrics - ie penalty notices issued
  • Income generated

Here's the response they received:

"The Council is unable to provide the documentation you requested as there is no initiative involving a dog watch van."

Okay...

"The vehicle in the picture you provided was previously the Council Dog Warden Vehicle and was used by the Dog Warden to fulfil the Council's statutory obligation of collecting stray dogs. Due to changes in service provision the vehicle is no longer used for this purpose."

Right, so it's no longer used for collecting stray dogs. What about enforcing the dog control notices they've plastered across the borough?

"The Dog Warden Service has never had any enforcement role in relation to the Dog Control Orders in force within Greenwich. However during 2009 it was considered acceptable that the vehicle displayed signage informing the public of the Orders as a method of promoting responsible dog ownership. 
The vehicle is still periodically used at dog promotion events and is still equipped to carry dogs; however as previously stated it does not have a role in the enforcement of Greenwich Council's Dog Control Orders."

So it was once a dog warden vehicle but now it's not? And it carries dog control order notices but the officers have absolutely no powers to enforce them?

So what exactly is the point of this van and what are these "dog promotion events" they've been attending to on Kidbrooke Green?

I'm afraid this hasn't really cleared up an awful lot:


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