The Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA), or HR 2863, introduced last month in Congress, would amend the Animal Welfare Act to prohibit the use of exotic and wild animals in traveling performances. If possible, follow up your letter with a call. This bill has strong opposition and has failed before.
Animals are housed and transported in very small cages.
Even for short journeys, animals are often loaded long before, and unloaded long after.
Circuses lack the resources to allow animals to exercise normally or act naturally.
Solitary animals get crowded together, predators and prey are housed in close proximity, and family members are separated.
Most “tricks” are coerced through the use of bull hooks, electric prods, whips, metal bars, and methods most would view as torturous.
Animals kept in circus conditions are prone to severe health, behavioral, and psychological problems.
Studies show that the transient nature of traveling circuses present significant challenges to, and increase the costs of, regulation and enforcement.
The extreme stress caused by the circus environment often makes wild animals highly dangerous, especially with the public. Deaths and injuries are becoming increasingly common.
Rep. Pramila Jayapal is a co-sponsor. Here’s a quick online way to thank her for being awesome.
The bill was introduced last month in the House Agriculture Committee, which has one WA member: Kim Schrier, D-Wenatchee (freshman Dem who helped flip the House from Republicans)
Snail mail: 1123 Longworth HOB, Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-7761
Here’s a sample letter for Rep. Schrier:
Dear Rep. Schrier,
Please support the Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA), which would prohibit the use of exotic and wild animals in traveling performances. This is a simple way to stop suffering and protect the public and would be a great way to build your record as a compassionate and forward-thinking Democrat in the House.
45 countries have banned such performances, the National Aquarium is releasing its dolphins to a sanctuary, SeaWorld has stopped captive breeding of orcas, Ringling Bros is out of business, Floridians voted overwhelmingly last year to stop greyhound racing.
This is a bill in keeping with the times. Business interests should not prevail in this case.
With thanks from your fellow Washingtonian,
Look up your House rep using your address and ask them to support TEAPSPA: https://www.house.gov/representatives/find-your-representative
From an email sent this week by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine:
“In a proposed rule, Sunscreen Drug Products for Over-the-Counter Human Use, FDA will require cancer tests which expose animals to very high doses of the sunscreen ingredients every day for two years, and other tests giving these chemicals to pregnant and lactating animals. The tests involve spreading chemicals on immobilized animals’ shaved skin every day. FDA may also require tests which involve force-feeding and injecting chemicals into the animals’ bodies. Following the testing, the animals would be killed and dissected.
“Despite the fact that these tests would kill tens of thousands of animals, FDA doesn’t mention whether it is even taking any steps to minimize the number of animals that would be used or to use data already available. This is at odds with recent FDA statements that the agency seeks to reduce and replace animal tests wherever possible.
“The animal tests won’t make sunscreen products safer and may delay the approval of newer, more effective sunscreen ingredients. FDA should require human-relevant, nonanimal tests that evaluate a chemical’s potential to damage DNA, increase cell growth, activate hormones, and suppress immunity. When combined with what is already known about a chemical, such tests provide useful information that can better protect consumers from harmful ingredients.
“After commenting, please share this alert with your friends and social networks. We need as many people as possible to voice their opposition to these tests.”