Link 2017

What is the CFHS Canadian Link Conference?

#LINK2017 is an innovative new conference that will examine the link between violence against human beings and animals, looking at the vulnerabilities in both populations and how they intermingle. We will bring together key Canadian sectors that work to prevent and address violence against people or animals for cross-sector training on how to stop the cycles of violence. This is the first time a conference of this kind has happened in Canada, and it promises to kick-start much-needed action on violence. Join us for the CFHS Canadian Link Conference, December 4-6 in Ottawa. Learn more here:

What will I learn?

  • Skills to examine the correlation between human vulnerability and animal vulnerability
  • The opportunity to create new networks and relationships that will enhance your work toward ending violence
  • The opportunity to found a national coalition to work on the violence link via cross-sectoral collaboration
  • An understanding of the roots of animal abuse and its connection to interpersonal and societal violence
  • An ability to identify the indicators of animal abuse and the steps to investigation and prosecution of these crimes
  • An ability to identify the indicators of interpersonal violence and the steps to responding
  • The opportunity to explore community-level partnerships involving social service providers, prosecutors, animal welfare organizations, the courts and law enforcement agencies, veterinarians and municipal/provincial/federal governments

Who is the conference for?

This conference is for social workers, animal cruelty enforcement personnel, veterinarians, police officers, first responders, animal welfare advocates, policy experts, anti-violence advocates, judges, politicians, bureaucrats and Crown prosecutors. More than 200 professionals from across Canada will attend to focus on how our sectors can work together to improve Canada’s response to violence. When we pool together this expertise, it's sure to lead to powerful insights and more effective strategies to prevent and address violence against people and animals.

Who is speaking at the conference?

Our prestigious speakers include:

Dr. Frank Ascione, PhD: an internationally-renowned researcher and author on the development of antisocial and prosocial behavior in children and Scholar-in Residence at the Graduate School of Social Work of the University of Denver. He is presenting on The Roots of Animal Abuse and Neglect and the Connections to Interpersonal and Societal Violence.

Tracy Porteous: the Executive Director of the Ending Violence Association of BC and a three-time Governor General of Canada medal recipient for her work to prevent and end violence. She is presenting on Understanding Lethal Risks Associated with Domestic Violence Toward Keeping Women, Families and Pets Safer.

Dr. Peter Collins, MD: a forensic psychiatrist who works with the OPP, the FBI, the RCMP, the Toronto Police Service and the Calgary Police Service, among other organizations, who will be speaking about Animal Abuse in the Criminal Mind.

Dr. Margaret Doyle, DVM: a forensic expert on animal abuse and neglect who has worked on hundreds of animal cruelty cases, from crime scene analysis and necropsies to providing expert witness testimony at trial. She will be speaking on The Veterinarian's Role in Preventing Violence. 

Marcie Moriarty: Chief Prevention and Enforcement Officer of the BC SPCA, thought leader on animal cruelty enforcement and prosecution, and a key advisor for Canada’s National Centre for the Prosecution of Animal Cruelty. She is co-presenting on Investigation and Prosecution of Animal Abuse and Neglect.

Alex Janse: Animal Cruelty Resource Counsel for British Columbia with the BC Ministry of Justice, thought leader on animal cruelty prosecution, and a key advisor for Canada’s National Centre for the Prosecution of Animal Cruelty. She is co-presenting on Investigation and Prosecution of Animal Abuse and Neglect.

Dr. Rebecca Ledger: an animal behaviour and welfare scientist who has been doing ground-breaking work as an expert witness in the prosecution of psychological and emotional suffering in cases involving cruelty and neglect. She is presenting on Determining Psychological Suffering in Cases of Animal Cruelty.

#LINK2017 is a ground-breaking new professional development opportunity that you do not want to miss. Recognized thought leaders from some of Canada's most influential sectors will teach you how to better prevent and address violence. CFHS is also offering great deals on travel to help you keep costs low!

Learn more at


Link 2017
Link 2017