February 22, 2011
Animal Advocates Lobby Idaho Lawmakers for Stronger Animal Welfare Legislation
Citizens from across Idaho participating in Humane Lobby Day 2011 today are meeting with lawmakers at the capitol and urging their legislators to enact stronger animal cruelty laws. The Humane Society of the United States, which has nearly 39,000 supporters in Idaho, is sponsoring Humane Lobby Day.
"Idaho has the bare-minimum penalties for animal cruelty offenses. The people of Idaho have no tolerance for animal cruelty but the legislature hasn't addressed this concern. It’s time we strengthen our current cruelty statues, adding maximum fines and a felony statute for both cruelty and torture, as well as making cockfighting a felony offense," said Lisa Kauffman, The HSUS’ Idaho state director.
Citizen lobbyists will push for upgrades to HB 149, which was recently introduced by Idaho Rep. Jim Patrick, R-Twin Falls. While the bill places horses in the companion animal section (as long as they are not used in the production process of animals used for food or fiber), it falls short in failing to address adding increased penalties for animal cruelty, torture and animal fighting. The bill is scheduled for a public hearing today at 1:30 p.m.
In 2010, state legislatures across the country passed 97 new laws for animals. The HSUS works with animal advocates and state legislators to enact laws protecting animals from cruelty, combating animal fighting, halting wildlife abuse and more.
Humane Lobby Day advocates are assembling in the Idaho State Capitol Rotunda at noon.
Follow The HSUS on Twitter. See our work for animals on your iPhone by searching "HumaneTV" in the App Store.
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.