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May 5, 2014

Animal Advocacy Groups Applaud New Jersey Senate Committee for Passing Crucial Ivory Ban Legislation

Bill Prohibits the Import and Sale of Ivory in New Jersey

Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society International

New Jersey's Senate Economic Growth Committee unanimously passed a bill to ban the interstate sale and import of ivory products. The Humane Society of the United States and Humane Society International applauded the move. S.2012, introduced by Senator Raymond J. Lesniak, would assist federal efforts to shut down the ivory trade by closing one of the nation’s largest ports to this illegal wildlife trade.

Kathleen Schatzmann, New Jersey state director for The Humane Society of the United States, said: “We commend Senate Economic Growth Chair Raymond Lesniak and his fellow Committee members for recognizing the critical role that New Jersey plays in ending the brutal ivory trade. We urge his colleagues in the New Jersey Senate, and subsequently in the House, to support this legislation. To save elephants from the brink of extinction, we must put an end to the ivory trade and close the markets for ivory.”

Senate Economic Growth Chairman Raymond Lesniak, D- District 20, said: "Last year 35,000 elephants were killed in Africa. If the killing rate continues, African elephants could be extinct within a decade. It is our obligation to do all we can to protect their survival. New Jersey has a chance to be a global leader in elephant conservation by ending the illegal ivory trade and setting an example for other states and nations to follow.”

Facts:

  • Illegal ivory trafficking is exploited by criminal networks that undermine the local rule of law and community livelihood in Africa.
  • African terrorist groups reportedly poach elephants and used the proceeds from the ivory sale to fund their nefarious activities.
  • In light of the devastating ramifications of the ivory trafficking, many political leaders have launched high-profile campaigns to save elephants and to combat the illegal ivory trade. Criminal investigation by the state agencies and the federal government last year led to the prosecution of an international network of wildlife traffickers in rhino horns and ivory worth of several million dollars.

Media Contact:
Raúl Arce-Contreras: 301-721-6440, rcontreras@humanesociety.org               

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