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March 30, 2012

New York Legislature Applauded for Stopping Proliferation of Live Animal Slaughter Markets

The Humane Society of the United States, on behalf of its more than 800,000 supporters in New York, commends the New York legislature for passing A.9158/S.6383, the bipartisan legislation to extend a four-year moratorium to forbid the licensing of any new live animal slaughter markets within 1,500 feet of a residential dwelling in New York City. The bill is now on its way to Gov. Andrew Cuomo for his signature.

In recent years, storefront slaughter facilities have spurred global concerns about inhumane slaughter, avian flu, and decreased quality of life for nearby residents. Championed by Assembly Member Barbara Clark, D-Queens, and Sen. Jack Martins, R-Mineola, the bill passed the Assembly earlier this month and passed the Senate yesterday.

“The last thing we need is more of these bloody, dirty and inhumane storefront slaughterhouses, especially where New Yorkers live, eat and sleep,” said Patrick Kwan, New York state director for The HSUS. “The Humane Society of the United States commends Assembly Member Clark and Senator Martins for their humane leadership in protecting animal welfare, public health and quality of life for New Yorkers.”

According to the New York State Consumer Protection Board, New York City has the largest number of live bird markets compared to other cities in the United States. Each of the approximately 80 New York City markets in operation may maintain up to 208,000 live birds each year with estimated total sales of 12 to 17 million birds annually citywide. Storefront slaughter facilities can act as breeding grounds for the emergence and spread of infectious diseases. The emergence of SARS and the deadly strain of avian influenza H5N1 have both been linked to live animal markets in China.

Facts:

  • A.9158/S.6383 extends the expiring 2008 state law sponsored by Assembly Member Clark and Sen. Frank Padavan, R-Queens, and advocated by The HSUS.  
  • As of Jan. 25, 2012, Japan banned importation of all poultry from New York state following the discovery of two recent cases of low-pathogenic avian influenza detected at a Brooklyn live animal slaughter market.   
  • A 1998 survey found 30 percent of live bird markets – particularly those in the New York metropolitan area – were infected with H7N2, and in 2001, inspectors could find the virus at 60 percent of markets at any one time.

 

Media Contact: Anna West: 301-258-1518; awest@humanesociety.org

 

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