Reply To: Feather laws and confiscations

Ron Kley

A few further thoughts –
Janice has correctly pointed out that you may (probably will) be dealing with a number of different authorities at both the state and federal levels, and it will be important to figure out which authority has jurisdiction over which confiscated items. (The authorities and their designated spokespersons may not be entirely “on the same page” about this, which can further complicate things.)
Your initial meetings with authority representatives should focus on information gathering and careful note-taking. What exactly was (or wasn’t) done by your organization that constituted a violation of exactly what state or federal statute/mandate/regulation/protocol/requirement? What should have been done (or not done) when, how, and by whom? Is there a procedure or protocol whereby the institution can be allowed to collect/receive/maintain/utilize program-appropriate feathers in the future? And, of course, is there a procedure or protocol by which any or all of the confiscated material might be restored to the institution for approved educational use?
With luck, you’ll get straight answers – or perhaps referrals to others who can provide those answers, and the gathered information will give you a better idea as to how or if it may be worthwhile to pursue the matter any further. There are many ways in which bureaucratic decisions can be reversed or circumvented in the interest of common sense – but it’s not necessarily worth the investment of time and energy.