Breaking news: Wellesley, Massachusetts votes to ban fur sales, first U.S. city outside California to do so

By on October 29, 2020 with 0 Comments

Wellesley, Massachusetts, has said a resounding “no” to fur. The town voted 140 to 64 last night (with two abstentions) to pass a ban on new fur sales, proposed by Liza Oliver, a district leader volunteer with the Humane Society of the United States. If the Massachusetts attorney general approves this measure, Wellesley will become the fifth municipality in the country—and the first outside California—to ban fur sales.

Before the state of California passed a ban on fur sales in 2019, four cities in the state, including West Hollywood, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Berkeley, had already banned sales of this product. Like the bans in these cities, the measure in Wellesley, a town just west of Boston, will exempt used fur products, leather and shearling.

The win in Wellesley, often identified as one of the wealthiest towns in the country, is the latest in a recent cascade of victories against fur. Earlier this month we learned that Israel could soon become the first country to ban fur sales, with the country’s environmental protection minister Gila Gamliel calling the industry “immoral.”

Just last month, Nordstrom announced it would end all fur sales by next year, joining Massachusetts-based TJ Maxx and some of the biggest names in fashion, including Prada, Gucci, Michael Kors, Bloomingdale’s and Macy’s.

Related: Breaking news: Mink on Wisconsin fur farm test positive for coronavirus, but U.S. inaction continues

The coronavirus pandemic has further strengthened the case for ending fur production, with mink in a number of countries testing positive. The Netherlands announced it would move up by more than two and a half years its deadline to ban mink fur farming, after evidence that mink on fur farms were spreading the virus to humans. Eleven fur farms in the United States, 166 in Denmark, 68 in the Netherlands, and one fur farm each in Spain and in Sweden have reported infected mink. According to recent reports, mink have also tested positive for the virus in Italy, but the government kept this from the public. France announced last month that it will ban all mink fur farming.

As Dr. Gail Hansen of the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association recently observed, “we have the very real possibility that farmed mink could be a persistent source for the virus and continued infection in people, posing a significant public health threat.”

Ending fur production and fur sales should be a no-brainer. Millions of animals suffer tremendously for things as frivolous as a pom on a hat or trim on a jacket. As Humane Society International investigations of fur farms have shown, animals bred for their fur live in abject misery and are killed in terribly violent ways. There is no need for this product especially when so many luxurious, manmade alternatives to fur are available. We congratulate the people of Wellesley for taking a decisive step in the right direction and for recognizing that there are humane ways to keep warm.

Learn how to volunteer as a district leader and push for a ban on fur and other animal protection issues in your state.

The U.S. is allowing trophy hunters to bring home hundreds of leopard trophies. We are suing to stop that

By on October 28, 2020 with 3 Comments
The U.S. is allowing trophy hunters to bring home hundreds of leopard trophies. We are suing to stop that

The number of leopards in sub-Saharan Africa has plummeted by 30% in just the last 20 years, putting the future of these unique animals in jeopardy. Yet the U.S. government continues to allow Americans to import nearly 300 leopard trophies a year. Today, the Humane . . . 

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Greyhound racing is all but dead as Florida prepares for its final races

By on October 27, 2020 with 4 Comments
Greyhound racing is all but dead as Florida prepares for its final races

With a historic law we helped pass that bans greyhound racing in Florida about to take effect at the beginning of 2021, the last three remaining racetracks in the state have announced the dates for their final races in December. It would not be a . . . 

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Congress moves to strengthen fight against wildlife trafficking, trade in wild animals for food

By on October 26, 2020 with 1 Comment
Congress moves to strengthen fight against wildlife trafficking, trade in wild animals for food

The trade in live wild animals and their body parts threatens the survival of so many wildlife species, and it poses serious global security and public health risks. In a one-two punch targeting this international crisis, members of Congress have introduced bills that would bolster . . . 

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The protection of wildlife is not about killing; it’s about cooperation that stops the killing

By on October 23, 2020 with 0 Comments
The protection of wildlife is not about killing; it’s about cooperation that stops the killing

Our agenda for the protection of wildlife is an ambitious one, focusing on the most serious threats to threatened and endangered animals in the United States and around the world. We’ve invested a lot of energy and resources in the fights to stop the trophy . . . 

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170 dog meat trade survivors touch down in the United States; new poll shows a growing majority of South Koreans reject dog meat

By on October 22, 2020 with 2 Comments
170 dog meat trade survivors touch down in the United States; new poll shows a growing majority of South Koreans reject dog meat

It’s a long way from dog meat farmer Il-Hwan Kim’s operation in South Korea to Washington, DC. Yet that’s the amazing journey being taken by 170 dogs rescued by Humane Society International’s Animal Rescue Team. Together with more than two dozen other dogs from previous . . . 

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Human-animal coexistence undermined by poor understanding of animal behavior and needs

By on October 21, 2020 with 0 Comments
Human-animal coexistence undermined by poor understanding of animal behavior and needs

The recent viral video of a Utah runner’s encounter with a mountain lion on a trail has set off a new round of debate about the challenges of human-wildlife coexistence. Unfortunately, as this story broke, some media outlets were quick to sensationalize the incident, falsely . . . 

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Urgent! US Fish and Wildlife Service goes rogue with proposal for baiting and trophy hunting of brown bears, and you can help us stop it

By on October 20, 2020 with 19 Comments
Urgent! US Fish and Wildlife Service goes rogue with proposal for baiting and trophy hunting of brown bears, and you can help us stop it

With a proposal to permit the killing of brown bears over bait in the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has “gone rogue.” The USFWS and its parent agency, the Department of the Interior, are way over on the dark . . . 

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Judge issues hefty fine on Chelsea Kennel Club for selling sick animals, new report shows Nebraska Department of Agriculture routinely ignores puppy mill suffering

By on October 20, 2020 with 28 Comments
Judge issues hefty fine on Chelsea Kennel Club for selling sick animals, new report shows Nebraska Department of Agriculture routinely ignores puppy mill suffering

A Manhattan Supreme Court judge has imposed a remarkable $3.9 million in fines on the now-closed Chelsea Kennel Club and its former owner, found liable for pushing sick puppies upon an unsuspecting public, and ordered them to set up a restitution fund for the consumers . . . 

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Another right whale on the ropes: entanglement means extinction

By on October 19, 2020 with 2 Comments
Another right whale on the ropes: entanglement means extinction

Our National Marine Fisheries Service, slow to take action, really shouldn’t need a prompt about the fierce urgency of now when it comes to protecting the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale. Still, a new reminder has come with the tragic sighting last week of . . . 

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Tell Missouri to trash its black bear hunt proposal; it’s based on research funded by Safari Club

By on October 16, 2020 with 20 Comments
Tell Missouri to trash its black bear hunt proposal; it’s based on research funded by Safari Club

Missouri’s proposal to open season on black bears has the trophy hunting industry’s fingerprints all over it. But the state’s residents now have a chance to voice their opposition to it. The Missouri Department of Conservation has just opened formal public comment on this ill-conceived . . . 

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Victory! Federal court rejects challenge to Prop 12

By on October 15, 2020 with 6 Comments
Victory! Federal court rejects challenge to Prop 12

Our legal team has just warded off a challenge to California’s Proposition 12, the world’s strongest farm animal protection law. A 9th Circuit court three-judge panel ruled today in favor of upholding this historic initiative that bans the heinous confinement of hens, mother pigs and . . . 

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