Action Alerts

Demand Investigation info Lack of Enforcement of Animal Welfare Act
Stop Animal Exploitation NOW! has uncovered the negligent deaths of literally dozens of animals in 18 research facilities across the U.S. The most shocking part of these atrocities is that the Animal Care Division of the USDA has done virtually nothing about these totally unnecessary deaths.
By literally pouring through thousands of pages of government reports, SAEN’s investigation unearthed the deaths of over 64 animals within 18 registered research facilities spread across the United States. Dogs, cats, primates, pigs, rabbits, hamsters, and other animals suffered cruel deaths at the hands of careless research staff in these labs.
Despite these appalling, needless deaths, the negligent labs have skirted by unscathed by the USDA’s Animal Care Division (USDA/AC) – the very regulatory agency put in charge of overseeing these labs.
Take Action
Please contact the Secretary of Agriculture to demand an immediate investigation into the utterly inadequate enforcement of the Animal Welfare Act.

Tom Vilsack
Secretary of Agriculture, USDA
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20250
email AgSec@usda@gov
phone (202) 720-3631

Only you can keep animal-friendly legislation alive in 2010!
The Washington State 2010 regular legislative session adjourned on March 11. Although two key animal bills did not pass the legislature this year, we can celebrate our 2010 successes and work to gain momentum for 2011!
* HB 1406/SB 5329, would have funded 70,000 spay/neuter surgeries annually for cats and dogs of low-income families. The bills did not pass the legislature, however the Senate did pass a resolution recognizing that spay/neuter saves cats and dogs lives and taxpayer dollars used to care for unwanted animals. This resolution, combined with increased public awareness and collaboration from numerous animal welfare groups, will help the bill in 2011.
* HB 1885 would have made it illegal to feed certain wild animals, protecting them from habituation and reducing dangerous conflicts between people and wildlife. HB 1885 made it all the way through the House and was close to a vote on the Senate floor, but time ran out.

Collectively, we still need to let our legislators know animal welfare remains a priority. It is not uncommon for bills to take multiple sessions to gain support and pass the legislature. That’s why it’s so important to contact your representatives about animal protections throughout the year:

1. Find your legislators and send each a note OR use the legislator e-mail directory to directly e-mail your representatives.
2. Use the note below to assist—any personalization will only make your message stronger.

Dear (Representative or Senator),
I understand Olympia faced a short session and a big budget challenge in 2010. However as your constituent, I’m disappointed that key bills such as, HB 1885 regarding the feeding of wildlife, and HB 1406/SB 5329 funding spay/neuter for cats and dogs, did not pass the 2010 session. Legislation which protects animals matters a great deal to me. Please support animal-friendly legislation in 2011!

Sincerely,
(Your name, phone number and home address)

News of Note

Ethical Food Report

Vegetarian activists try in-your-face tactics
Not content to sit quietly at home eating their tofu cutlets, more and more vegetarians, it seems, are taking action, trying to get the carnivorous masses to change their ways.  Of course, the meat-free have been trying to win people over to their cause since the time of Pythagoras. But lately, activists are trying more in-your-face tactics.

Pressure Is On to Ban a Hazardous but Profitable Feed Additive
Food saftey concerns arose after a 2004 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) study revealed that more arsenic is retained in chicken meat than previously thought. According to Tyson, the average U.S. consumer eats about 89 pounds of chicken a year (compared to 28 pounds per person in 1960). The FDA’s tolerance level for arsenic in chicken, set decades ago, has never been revised.
See Also:
Bill set to ban arsenic in chicken feed

FBI searches Salt Lake City home of animal rights supporter
The FBI served a search warrant Monday on a Salt Lake City home occupied by a supporter of the Animal Liberation Front.  Peter D. Young, 32, said at least eight FBI agents arrived about 11:30 a.m. The agents took computers, papers and other items it thought to be related to “animal enterprise terrorism,” Young said, reciting language from the warrant. “It’s important to highlight the fact that I am being targeted just because I am a public figure on the subject” of animal rights, Young said in an interview Tuesday.

Set the Killers Free – A Whale Expert Argues Against Orcas in Captivity
Deborah Giles, a marine biogeographer at the University of California, Davis, with 20 years‘ experience observing wild killer whales, explains why there is little scientific and no conservation value in keeping these ocean giants (Orcinus orca) in captivity.

Men leave their own mark on veganism
When McCain reached his mid-40s the party ended. Topping the scales at 257 pounds and bulging out of his clothes, the stout father of three was fat, unhappy, and “terribly uncomfortable.’’ On the advice of his childhood friend Brian Rothwell, a yoga instructor and lifelong vegan, McCain cut meat, dairy, eggs, chicken, and fish from his diet and added power vinyasa yoga, which helped him shed 60 pounds in eight months. “I feel like a million bucks. And if anything, I don’t look like a slob anymore,’’ says McCain.

Moby in tune with vegan diet
His new book is “Gristle: From Factory Farms to Food Safety (Thinking Twice About the Meat We Eat).”  The book is a collection of essays about food written by contributors including Whole Foods founder John Mackey, Small Planet Institute founder Frances Moore Lappé and triathlete and vegan Brendan Brazier.
We caught up with him in an e-mail interview just before the book’s release.

Action Alerts

Stop Washington National Primate Research Center Expansion
The Washington primate center is asking for $15 million dollars from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to expand their facilities, even though its affiliated institution, the University of Washington, was recently reported to receive more public health funds than any institution except Harvard. The requested $15 million would be used to build a Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3) lab at their Western Building for the study of deadly, infectious diseases in non-human primates, even though the Seattle area currently houses about 30 BSL-3 labs (according to UW representatives during 2005 public hearings).
Please send a letter immediately to Barbara Alving, M.D., the director of NCRR, and politely request that NCRR not fund the WaNPRC expansion project. The NCRR Advisory Council is reviewing grant applications on an ongoing basis, so there is still time to stop the expansion!

Barbara M. Alving, M.D.
Director, NCRR
31 Center Drive, Suite 3B11, MSC 2128
Bethesda, MD 20892-2128
phone (301) 496-5793
email barbara.alving@nih.gov

for more information see
http://www.all-creatures.org/alert/alert-20100310.html

News of Note

Woodland Park artificially inseminates elephant again
A 31-year-old Asian elephant at the Woodland Park Zoo was artificially inseminated this week in hopes of creating a “multigenerational herd,” zoo officials said Thursday.  Chai — whose popular 6-year-old calf, Hansa, died in 2007 from an elephant herpes virus — was inseminated first on Wednesday and again on Thursday, after she showed signs of ovulating, said Nancy Hawkes, the zoo’s general curator.

USDA fails to stop anal shocking and other abuses of slaughterhouse animals
The federal agency responsible for ensuring humane handling of animals in slaughterhouses does so inconsistently, resulting in continued “egregious” abuses, charges a report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).  Testifying before congress this month, a GAO official described flawed enforcement of the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act of 1978 (HMSA), which “prohibits the inhumane treatment of livestock in slaughter plants.”

USDA veterinarian testifies agency endangers public health
In testimony before the US House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Dr. Dean Wyatt testified as to how the agency supports unhealthy practices at the national slaughterhouses and endangers the nation’s meat food supply…Dr. Wyatt also testified that he was directed by his superiors to “drastically cut back” the time spent on ensuring that animals destined for food were treated humanely. In fact, according to Dr. Wyatt, he and other inspectors were chastised, reprimanded, and demoted for reporting violations. Dr. Wyatt was also threatened with termination.

Talks to Address Trade in Tuna and Ivory
About 40 proposals are on the agenda for the 12-day meeting of the United Nations Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, which could help determine the fate of species from rhinoceroses to polar bears, from hammerhead sharks to red coral.  A pronounced focus on marine creatures is evident in this year’s proposals, reflecting a growing awareness of the decimation of the seas, negotiators and conservation experts say.

Mega-dairies: Farming solution or big problem?
The plan for Britain’s first “factory farm” for cows has stirred up the debate on the future of farming in Europe.  Similar “feedlot” dairies are commonplace in the U.S., but plans for a complex housing up to 8,100 cows in England is the first proposal on such a large scale in Western Europe. It is still far from clear whether they will be accepted on a continent increasingly obsessed with where its food comes from.

Feds charge trendy sushi restaurant for serving whale meat
Federal authorities have charged a trendy Santa Monica sushi restaurant with serving whale meat — an investigation that was spurred by the team behind the Oscar-winning documentary, “The Cove.”

Vegan place coming to Broadway courtesy of the Squid and Ink folks
Howard Clark and Jarrod Ducat, the duo behind Georgetown’s famous vegan restaurant Squid and Ink, are bringing their vegan goodness to Broadway.  Highline will occupy the former Club Lagoon space at 210 Broadway East.  They are hoping to open by the beginning of May.

Action Alerts

Stop Washington National Primate Research Center Expansion
The Washington primate center is asking for $15 million dollars from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to expand their facilities, even though its affiliated institution, the University of Washington, was recently reported to receive more public health funds than any institution except Harvard. The requested $15 million would be used to build a Biosafety Level 3 (BSL-3) lab at their Western Building for the study of deadly, infectious diseases in non-human primates, even though the Seattle area currently houses about 30 BSL-3 labs (according to UW representatives during 2005 public hearings).
Please send a letter immediately to Barbara Alving, M.D., the director of NCRR, and politely request that NCRR not fund the WaNPRC expansion project. The NCRR Advisory Council is reviewing grant applications on an ongoing basis, so there is still time to stop the expansion!

Urge Canada to Support Increased Polar Bear Protections
Tell Canada’s Prime Minister and Minister of the Environment to reverse their decision to allow trophy hunting of polar bears at the upcoming CITES meeting that will be held 13-25 March 2010 in Doha, Qatar. The U.S. declared the polar bear as a “threatened” species in 2008. The 175 member states will be voting on the U.S. proposal at that time.

CONTACT:
The Honourable Stephen Harper
Prime Minister
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa
K1A 0A2
email  pm@pm.gc.ca

AND
The Honourable Jim Prentice
Minister of the Environment
Les Terrasses de la Chaudière
10 Wellington Street, 28th Floor
Gatineau, Quebec
K1A 0H3
email: jim.prentice@ec.gc.ca

For more information or talking points see here

End EPA Animal Testing Requirements
The Environmental Protection Agency is spearheading a new approach to evaluating chemicals that could end the use of animals and we applaud them. Yet EPA still requires vast amounts of animal testing for pesticides, water pollutants, and other substances.
Common types of EPA-required tests include widely condemned “lethal dose” methods, and other force-feeding or inhalation tests developed decades ago. So while science has progressed in every other discipline, animals are still being poisoned to assess the risks of chemicals.

Tell Lisa Jackson, Head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that it’s time to replace animals in pesticide and endocrine testing. Urge the EPA to include the minimization of animal testing among EPA’s core principles for the regulation of industrial chemicals under any version of chemical regulation reform, including the Toxic Substances Control Act.

Lisa Jackson
US EPA Headquarters
Ariel Rios Building
1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Mail Code: 1101A
Washington, DC 20460
phone (202) 564-4700
email:  jackson.lisa@epa.gov

Also see

News of Note

Sea lions killed for eating too many salmon
Wildlife officials have tried everything to keep sea lions from eating endangered salmon, dropping bombs that explode under water and firing rubber bullets and bean bags from shotguns and boats. Now they are resorting to issuing death sentences to the most chronic offenders.  This is the second year of the program, which is administered by wildlife officials in Oregon and Washington and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.  Last year, 11 sea lions were euthanized. Another four were transferred to zoos or aquariums.

Canadian Parliament to serve seal meat at lunch
The Canadian Parliament’s restaurant will serve seal meat this week in support of hunters battling a European Union ban on seal products, a Liberal senator said Monday.  Celine Hervieux-Payette said Wednesday’s seal meat lunch menu will allow politicians to demonstrate their backing for the annual hunt.  “All political parties will have the opportunity to demonstrate to the international community the solidarity of the Canadian Parliament behind those who earn a living from the seal hunt,” she said in a statement.

Don’t Tell the Kids
Nine people had paid $100 each to learn how to raise, kill and butcher the animals. One was a woman hoping to start a farm in the Bronx. Another was considering a move to family land in Montana. A couple dressed in black had traveled from the Upper East Side with their knives and cutting boards in an Abercrombie & Fitch bag.  Still, it’s a rabbit, the animal entire generations know as the star of children’s books and Saturday-morning cartoons, and as a classroom mascot.

Fretting About the Last of the World’s Biggest Cats
The numbers are not encouraging. Experts believe the global wild tiger population has fallen to below 3,000 — less than 3 percent of what it was just 100 years ago. Today, their range has been reduced to small patches, isolating many of the animals in genetically impoverished groups of dozens of cats or fewer.  In India, some famous tiger reserves have no tigers left at all.  The new Year of the Tiger, which began last month, will be a year of talking about the tiger, and urgently so.

Swiss voters reject giving abused animals a lawyer
The result was emphatic: Swiss voters don’t think abused animals need to have their own lawyers.  It’s a proposal that would never even come near a referendum in other countries, but the measure’s defeat Sunday disappointed animal rights advocates, who say Switzerland’s elaborate animal welfare laws aren’t being enforced.

Vegans should be protected from discrimination, says equality watchdog
The guidance, prepared by the Equality and Human Rights Commission says religions need not be mainstream or well known for their adherents to gain protection.  “A belief need not include faith or worship of a god or gods, but must affect how a person lives their life or perceives the world,” it states.  However, the government distanced itself from the code of practice and said it never intended “views or opinions” such as veganism to be covered by equality law.

Wisconsin woman feeds bear at zoo, gets fingers bitten off
This animal bit the hand that fed him – and took a couple fingers, too.  At a Wisconsin zoo Friday, a 47-year-old grandmother ignored warning signs, putting her hand through fencing to feed an Asiatic black bear, police said.

Action Alerts

Tell Obama To Say NO! to Commercial Whaling
Tell President Obama to instruct the U.S. Representative to the International Whaling Commission (IWC), Monica Medina, to vote AGAINST commercial whaling.

President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington DC 20500
(202) 456-1111
web email form:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact

Monica Medina
US Commissioner to the IWC
202/482-3567
email: monica.medina@noaa.gov

Ask Carnival Cruise Lines To Stop Serving Foie Gras
One of the world’s largest cruise lines offers one of the world’s cruelest dishes on the menu. Carnival Cruises serves foie gras on their ships to exotic destinations, but there is nothing exotic about foie gras. French for “fatty liver”; foie gras has long been known as “the delicacy of despair.”
Make Your Voice Heard—Take Action
Please contact Carnival by mail, e-mail, fax and phone and POLITELY ask that foie gras be removed from all ship dining rooms.
You can send letters or call:
Gerald Cahill, President and CEO, Carnival Cruise Lines
3655 NW 87th Ave
Miami, FL 33178
gcahill@carnival.com

Cheryl Alvarez, Food and Beverage Manager, Carnival Cruise Lines
clvarez@carnival.com

Phone for both: (305) 599-2600 (ask to be connected to Cheryl Alvarez, then call back and ask to be connected to Gerry Cahill. Leave a polite message on their voicemail)