May 7, 2009
NY State Ponders Better Conditions for Farm Animals
Bill's Introduction Follows Calif.'s Landslide Approval of Similar Measure Last Fall
ALBANY, N.Y. — The Humane Society of the United States and Farm Sanctuary, headquartered in New York, announced enthusiastic support for legislation introduced in the New York State Assembly to provide more room for farm animals.
The bill, A08163, introduced Tuesday by Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal, D-Manhattan, prohibits confining breeding pigs, calves raised for veal and egg-laying hens in cages that prevent them from turning around or extending their limbs.
"This modest measure would make a world of difference to animals subjected to the terrible pain, discomfort and abuse of extreme confinement for months on end. Common sense and an abundance of scientific evidence clearly demonstrates that animals suffer when forced to remain immobile nearly all of their lives," said Patrick Kwan, New York state director for The HSUS.
Californians overwhelmingly passed a similar measure, The Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act, by ballot initiative last fall.
"It's simply inhumane to confine animals in cages so small they can't turn around or extend their limbs," said Gene Baur, president and co-founder of Farm Sanctuary. "We've rescued enough animals from these cruel confinement systems to know how debilitating they are, and we urge swift passage of this humane legislation to end this abuse on factory farms in New York."
The bill has been referred to the Agriculture Committee, where it awaits a vote.
- The measure would phase out extreme confinement systems such as battery cages for hens, veal crates for calves and gestation crates for pigs.
- The HSUS and Farm Sanctuary were the main backers of the California proposition, which was endorsed by groups including the Center for Food Safety, the California Veterinary Medical Association, Union of Concerned Scientists and the Consumer Federation of America.
- In addition to California, four other states have passed similar reforms, including Colorado, Florida, Arizona and Oregon.
- The bill is co-sponsored by the following legislators: Nelson Castro, D-Bronx, Amy Paulin, D-Westchester, Alan Maisel, D-Brooklyn, John McEneny, D-Kings, Micah Kellner, D-New York, Brian Kavanagh, D-Manhattan, Joan Millman, D-Brooklyn, Patricia Eddington, D-Suffolk, Annette Robinson, D-Brooklyn, and Richard Gottfried, D-Manhattan.
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The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education, and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the web at humanesociety.org.
Follow Farm Sanctuary on Twitter.
Farm Sanctuary is the nation's leading farm animal protection organization. Since incorporating in 1986, Farm Sanctuary has worked to expose and stop cruel practices of the "food animal" industry through research and investigations, legal and institutional reforms, public awareness projects, youth education, and direct rescue and refuge efforts. Farm Sanctuary shelters in Watkins Glen, N.Y., and Orland, Calif., provide lifelong care for hundreds of rescued animals, who have become ambassadors for farm animals everywhere by educating visitors about the realities of factory farming. Additional information can be found at farmsanctuary.org.