Defender Radio and The Switch

Going green is a good idea.There aren't many people who don't want to see a more sustainable world that lessens our impact on the planet, habitats, ecosystems, and individual animals, regardless of political affiliations. But how to get there – and what will or won’t work – remains controversial.

Curbing greenhouse gas emissions elicits a highly politicized conversation, with sides across the political spectrum using misinformation and disinformation to push for their own plans – and undermine those of their opponents.

The questions must become what actions are available and are practical for all political parties, how industries can transform without costing working families their livelihoods, and what we can do as individuals on a day to day basis. To help talk about these important questions, Defender Radio was joined by an authority on the politics of going green: Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party of Canada.

Direct download: 2017-10-30_DefenderRadioPodcast_-_ElizabethMay.mp3
Category:Season 04 -- posted at: 2:56pm EDT

This story started with necessity too – Canadian Football player James Yurichuk was moving his family from tepid Vancouver to brisk Toronto, and wanted to buy his wife a nice winter coat to help with the transition. But there was a problem: they were all filled with goose down and lined with coyote fur.

From that simple necessity grew conversations with childhood friend Anthony DeBartolo, ideas and sketches, and a vision for an ethical, compassionate company. Fast forward a few years, and Wully Outerwear is creating high-performance, animal-free jackets that are competing in the marketplace – and growing in popularity every day.

The story of Wully Outerwear started in a small Ontario town hockey rink, and today is saving the lives of thousands of animals. To share their journey and explore their motivations, hopes, and what’s next for the made-in-Canada company, Defender Radio was joined by co-founders James Yurichuk and Anthony DeBartolo.

Direct download: 2017-10-23_DefenderRadioPodcast-WullyOuterwear.mp3
Category:Season 04 -- posted at: 3:17pm EDT

Poisons that cause extreme suffering and death are being used to cruelly kill wolves. But there’s an opportunity to get at least one of them out of our country. Strychnine, Compound 1080, and M-44 cyanide devices are all used in Alberta to kill wolves – and anything else that comes into contact with them. Some of these poisons are also used in Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Several permits that allow the use of Strychnine in Alberta are set to expire in December 2017, creating a unique opportunity to outlaw these disturbing agents of death, and raise awareness of the plight facing not only wolves, but all manner of carnivores targeted with these poisons through baiting.

To understand why these poisons are being used, what other solutions exist for managing livestock conflict and protecting at-risk species, and how we can be part of the change, Defender Radio was joined by Sadie Parr, Executive Director of Wolf Awareness Inc.

Direct download: 2017-10-16_DefenderRadioPodcast-WolfPoisonings.mp3
Category:Season 04 -- posted at: 10:13am EDT

. It was a day of mixed emotions when we heard that the new NDP-led government in British Columbia would ban trophy hunting of grizzly bears – but still allow them to be killed for the quote meat.

This pack out provision led to a big debate in the media, in comments, and on chatrooms across the province and country. It stood to reason that a good way to find out what people really thought about the hunting of grizzly bears was to ask them. Enter Insights West.

Funded by LUSH Cosmetics and the Commercial Bear Viewing Association, Insights polled a sample of BC residents to get their opinions on grizzly bear hunting. Seventy-four per cent of residents support a ban on all hunting of grizzlies, which is a positive stat, though not surprising. What left me slack jawed was that 58% of self-identified hunters also support a ban on the hunting of all grizzlies.

Immediately, this survey made headlines across the province and spurred even more debate. Throw in a mixture of all the fake news/inaccurate polling/lack of trust in media that has underscored the last 12 months, and the scientifically-valid survey got called into question. That’s why Defender Radio connected with Mario Canseco, the VP of Insights West. Mario discusses what the grizzly bear poll shows, why professional surveys are a valuable tool, and why advocates should be looking to the numbers.

Direct download: 2017-10-10_Complete.mp3
Category:Season 04 -- posted at: 11:01pm EDT

Between our battles to protect animals, and the seemingly endless stream of terror attacks, natural disasters, and headlines involving Donald Trump, feeling tired isn’t surprising. But it’s important to understand the difference between being a bit tired, and burning out.

With all that’s going on in the world, we thought it was time to talk about mental health with someone who has knowledge of the world of advocacy, as well as the training and expertise to talk about burnout. That’s why we brought Defender Radio host Michael Howie’s wife, Kate Howie, onto the show.

Kate is a concurrent disorders outreach specialist for a health network in Southern Ontario, has an extensive background in counselling on issues like addiction, and an education in sociology and social work. She sat down with Defender Radio to talk about recognizing burnout in ourselves and others, learning the first steps we can take to prevent burnout, and how we can ask for help.

Direct download: 2017-10-03_DefenderRadioPodcast-Burnout.mp3
Category:Season 04 -- posted at: 6:26pm EDT