House Bill 1375 – the Bill to Stop Fur Farms in Washington has had its public hearing, but there is still time for you to contact your representatives and voice your support!
We’re asking you to call on the Washington State legislature to take action to halt breeding these fur animals immediately, and to close the 66 Washington fur farms that are still lingering in 2021 while COVID-19 circulates our communities.
Please contact your Representatives to ask them to SUPPORT HB-1375: https://app.leg.wa.gov/pbc/bill/1375
Here is some information on the Bill if you’d like to include it in comments to your representative:
* Public Health:
In the midst of the global COVID-19 crisis, an unforeseen issue has arisen: farming animals—including minks—for their fur. Not only is this practice outdated, barbaric, unusually cruel, and toxic to our environment, but it has also been discovered that minks can act as a reservoir for SARS-CoV-2, including a mutated version of the virus: the cluster 5 variant, which has the potential to cause a new pandemic wave due to its decreased sensitivity to antibodies.
At least nine countries have experienced outbreaks among minks and employees on fur farms: Denmark, the Netherlands, Canada, Italy, Spain, Greece, Germany, Lithuania, and Sweden. Several US states have as well, including Michigan, Wisconsin, Oregon, and Utah, with Utah now reporting infected wild animals around the immediate vicinity of farms. If similar outbreaks were to happen on Washington mink farms, it could infect Washington’s wild mink population, too.
* Ethical concerns:
Fur farming is not only a wildlife concern but also an ethical concern. Numerous scientific reports have indicated that severe health problems are inherent to fur production and that animals on all fur farms have been found to display physical and behavioral abnormalities, such as infected wounds, missing limbs from biting incidents, eye infections, bent feet, mouth deformities, self-mutilation, cannibalism of dead siblings or offspring, and other stress-related stereotypical behavior, such as pacing along the cage wall, repetitive circling or nodding of the head.
* Animal cruelty:
Fur harvesting methods including gassing, neck breaking, and anal or genital electrocution—none of which are reliable at killing the animals before they are skinned or live-plucked for their fur while still conscious, a process which causes extreme pain.
* Environmental pollution & degradation:
The animals’ manure and the incineration of their bodies (a common method of disposal) release air pollutants, which include carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SO2), hydrochloric acid (HCl), volatile organic compounds (VOCs), dioxins, particulates, and heavy metals. Nitrogen and phosphorus in factory farms’ manure runoff lead to toxic algae growth in waterways, causing biodiversity loss and rendering lakes unswimmable. When algae blooms occur, it limits the amount of oxygen for other aquatic species and causes dead zones, killing indigenous species.
* Fur is over world-wide!
Over 230 mainstream brands and retailers, including Nordstrom, Gap Inc, Zara, Macy’s, H&M, Gucci, and more are banning fur from their products. A vast amount of countries once known for fur farming, including Denmark, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Hungary, and others are already banning fur farms or expediting their closures to 2021.
More information on HB 1375: