July 31, 2010 – CHICAGO, (EWA) – The National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) has passed a resolution calling for the reinstatement of USDA inspectors for horse meat.
The NCSL is a non-governmental lobbyist organization which serves the nation’s 50 states legislators to advocate and lobby for the interests of states before Congress and federal agencies. The resolutions NCSL passes are not binding and merely allow them to lobby on behalf of the states.
Representative Sue Wallis (WY), who is vice chair of the NCSL’s Agriculture and Energy Committee, went on record asking that she be allowed to slaughter horses to feed Wyoming children, the poor and prison inmates without having the meat federally inspected for consumer safety. The Wyoming livestock board responded quickly by stating in no uncertain terms that “horse slaughter is not an option.”
The Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) strongly opposes the misuse of tax payer dollars to fund inspections for an industry that is not needed or wanted by the overwhelming majority of Americans.
House Bill to Ban Hauling Horses on Double Deck Trailers
(Washington, DC) – The Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) applauds Chairman James Oberstar (D-MN), of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, for bringing the Horse Transportation Safety Act (H.R. 305) before his Committee and supporting its swift unanimous passage.
“We are especially grateful for the leadership and commitment of the bill’s sponsors Congressman Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Congressman Steve Cohen (D-TN). Both have been incredible champions for the welfare of America’s horses,” noted Christine Sequenzia, AWI federal policy advisor.
Several bipartisan cosponsors spoke in support of H.R. 305 during the hearing, including a poignant opening statement by Congressman Cohen. H.R. 305 passed by a voice vote with no amendments and is now headed to the House floor.
July 30, 2010 – Edition 11 – This Unwanted Horse Coalition news summary is provided as an educational service to those interested in the issue of the unwanted horse. The articles do not reflect the opinions of the Unwanted Horse Coalition or any of its employees. The listing of events does not constitute an endorsement of a particular event. If you see an article or event that may be appropriate for inclusion in Media Roundup, please e-mail it to email@example.com.
1,600 Unwanted Horses Receive Spring Vaccinations
This spring the Unwanted Horse Veterinary Relief Campaign (UHVRC) vaccinated 1,600 unwanted horses against critical equine diseases. Established in December 2008, UHVRC provides qualifying equine rescue and retirement facilities with complimentary equine vaccines for horses in their care. To date, more than 4,000 horses across the United States have received vaccines through the program. Read More…
July 29, 2010 – We keep hearing the upsetting stories from our wild horse advocates living in Nevada near the BLM wild horse holding facilities about wild horses being hauled in the middle of the night and disappearing. We hear it often.
We’ve been told by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), that’s to prevent the horses from getting overheated during the high temperatures in the hot summer months, but that doesn’t fly when we hear of it happening during the cold winter months.
When numbers from BLM reports don’t add up, and large numbers of horses are missing from the charts, all those stories of night-time hauls come to mind.
July 27, 2010 – CHICAGO, (EWA) – As controversy swirls over the aggressive removal of horses from the range by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), a more fundamental question has arisen over what is happening to the horses it already has in holding. Over the past several years, equine advocates have been scrutinizing the BLM’s horse population counts. Once again, the numbers don’t add up to their claims.
The BLM doesn’t make it easy to track horses being removed from the range or residing in short and long term holding. The taxpayers who pay for the removals and the subsequent care are not allowed to view the horses under the well worn excuse that they are being held on “private property”. Consequently, there are no checks and balances to verify information being reported.
It also raises a salient question. With 262 million mostly vacant acres under its control, why on earth is a federal agency such as the BLM wasting taxpayer’s money to lease private property?
July 7, 2010 – CHICAGO (EWA) – On June 23, 2010, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Elko District office buried on its website a notice that approximately 175 “abandoned, domestic, estray” horses located within Pilot Valley, NV, were scheduled for impoundment beginning June 25. The round up was expected to take 3 – 4 days with corrals set up on nearby private land owned by Simplot Land and Livestock until the horses could be transported and placed under the jurisdiction of the State of Nevada.
According to Nevada laws, an estray is a horse that is found running loose on public lands but shows signs of domestication and the owner is unknown. A horse is considered “feral” under Nevada law if the animal was domesticated or is the offspring of domesticated horses and has become wild with no physical signs of domestication. The state of Nevada owns estray and feral horses. Wild horses and free-roaming Mustangs are protected by the BLM under the 1971 Wild Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act.
Nevada authorities plan to sell the horses rounded up by the BLM at auction on July 10. The horses will be available to all buyers and are therefore at risk of ending up at slaughterhouses in Mexico or Canada.
July 5, 2010 – CHICAGO (EWA) – The recent appointment of Dr. Douglas Corey to the top spot of the Washington lobby group, The Unwanted Horse Coalition (UHC), has made their loudly proclaimed stance of being neutral on the contentious issue of horse slaughter difficult to swallow.
Corey follows Dr. Tom Lenz, former head of American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP). Both Lenz and Corey pull no punches on their enthusiastic support of horse slaughter. The two veterinarians with close ties to animal agriculture refer to horse slaughter as an end-of-life option that is needed. Regrettably, with the UHC parent group, The American Horse Council, this front for unscrupulous breeders and the meat industry, often has the ear of Congress and is considered a respected and respectable humanitarian organization.
The daring hypocrisy of both organizations is stunning and Corey’s own words prove it. Few equine rescue organizations are members of the UHC, shunning the prohibitive cost of membership to join. Rescue groups, dependent upon donations, would prefer to spend their funds on feed and hay.
May 17, 2010 – CHICAGO, (EWA) – Equine Welfare Alliance and Animal Law Coalition applaud the grass roots efforts in 2010 that have resulted in a series of political defeats for those who want to bring horse slaughter back to the United States.
Of course, commercial horse slaughter for human consumption remains illegal in the U.S. and no state law can change that. Nonetheless, proponents of the cruel practice have tried to use state legislatures to try to convince Americans to bring horse slaughter back to the U.S.
In Missouri, for example, a bill, H.B. 1747, introduced by state Rep. James Viebrock, purported to allow the state to register and license and even provide inspections for horse slaughter facilities. There was even talk of building a horse slaughter plant in a small town in the state.
April 9, 2010 – CHICAGO (EWA) – The Canadian Horse Defence Coalition (CHDC) recently released hidden camera footage from an investigation that took place at the two largest horse slaughter plants in Canada, Bouvry Exports and Viande Richelieu.
So horrific are the conditions depicted at both plants that they have prompted Bill desBarres, Chairman of the Horse Welfare Alliance of Canada (HWAC) and a long time proponent of horse slaughter, to declare he believes the footage was fabricated by groups opposed to “any animal agriculture”.
Bill desBarres and his organization have repeatedly praised the CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency) and its inspectors for their diligence in assuring that horses are treated humanely at the slaughter plants and his organization lists the CFIA as a “resource partner” on their web site. The Horse Welfare Alliance appears to be nothing more than a front for the horse slaughter industry.
April 2, 2010 – CHICAGO (EWA) – A peer reviewed scientific study tracing race horses sent to slaughter for human consumption has found that 100% of the horses in the study group had been administered phenylbutazone, a banned carcinogen that can also fatally damage the bone marrow of humans. The findings appear to validate the European Union’s recent tightening of traceability requirements on horse meat from third countries.
The paper, titled Association of phenylbutazone usage with horses bought for slaughter: A public health risk, appeared in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology and calls into question the reliability of the USDA (US Department of Agriculture) and CFIA (Canadian Food Inspection Agency) testing programs which have consistently failed to detect the substance.
The manuscript, which was authored by Drs. Nicholas Dodman, Nicolas Blondeau and Ann M. Marini, followed eighteen Thoroughbred (TB) race horses that were identified by matching their registered name to their race track drug record over a five year period and were given phenylbutazone (PBZ, Bute) on race day and were subsequently sent to slaughter for human consumption.