U.S. Travelling Exotic Animal Protection Act gathers support

Our LA team is steadily gaining grassroots support for the Traveling Exotic Animal Protection Act (TEAPA) (H.R. 3359), see:

We introduced this federal bill last November with Congressman Jim Moran (D-VA) which aims to protect wild animals from being forced to perform in traveling circuses in the US.  Spirits soared in the U.S. last week when we announced the victory in Greece, with their complete ban on all animals in traveling circuses – we saw a spike in advocates using our Action Alert to contact Congress about TEAPA:

We need to keep this momentum going so please educate yourself about this important legislation and take a minute to participate in our Break the Chain campaign to contact your Member of Congress today!

ADI’s Campaigns Director Matt Rossell was recently a guest on the popular Our Hen House podcast, discussing his past undercover work, ADI’s campaigns worldwide, and our campaign to Break the Chain of circus abuse in the US and you can listen in here:

ADI just visited the California Department of Fish & Game (DFG) Director’s office in Sacramento to shed light on a serious conflict of interest with a State committee member,

who advises the Agency on humane care of wildlife, who also owns an entertainment industry company, Have Trunk Will Travel (HTWT), that ADI caught on video in 2005 violently hitting and shocking elephants:

ADI also presented the video evidence to the Advisory Committee for the Humane Care and Treatment of Wild Animals meeting where Kari Johnson, HTWT co-owner, was in attendance. Among other abuses, the video evidence shows an elephant being shocked to perform a headstand and crying out in pain, and a baby elephant being “hooked” with a bullhook inside his sensitive mouth, both depicting violations of state law.

ADI also challenged Ringling Bros. Circus’s inappropriate seat on this committee highlighting their ongoing abuses toward wild animals and their recent $270,000 massive settlement with the USDA for violations of the Animal Welfare Act:

Clearly companies caught abusing animals should not be given a position advising the State on humane care of wildlife and ADI is awaiting a response from the DFG Director Charlton Bonham.

Greece ban is won!

Success! The Greek Government has banned the use of all (yes, ALL) animals in circuses following a campaign by Animal Defenders International (ADI) and the Greek Animal Welfare Fund (GAWF), backed by over 50 local animal protection groups across Greece.

The new law follows ADI’s undercover circus investigations showing horrific suffering, launched across Greece in 2006 – the same year that the UK announced it was going to bring in a wild animal ban. We’re still waiting.

We applaud the decisive action of the Greek government, who made the time to make this statement about what kind of society they want to be, clearly civilized and responsible towards other species. Surely this must spur on the British government, now that they find themselves lagging behind Greece, Portugal, Austria, Denmark and Croatia in Europe on this issue?

South America is on the case – Bolivian banned in 2009; Peru banned last year; Colombia, Brazil and Ecuador are all discussing it. Greece shows that Europe is on the case – come on United Kingdom! And then there’s the United States….

Greece is the first country in Europe to ban all animals in circuses, not just wild animals. This acknowledges that the traveling circus is no place for animals and that the barren, deprived, unnatural environments, constant travel and stress of being forced to perform are just as damaging for domesticated species as it is for wild animals.

Let’s hope Washington is listening – this is a world-changing movement and its moment has arrived. Together with Congressman Jim Moran, we launched our federal circus bill for a ban on animal circuses in the US last November – get your member of congress to sign up to the Traveling Exotic Animal Protection Act, H.R. 3359!