Critical Caselaw: Judicial Recognition of Animal Sentience
Sentience — being a living, feeling creature — forms the very core of what it means to be an animal. Indeed, the ability to feel is what distinguishes animals from objects — it makes animals ‘whos’, not ‘whats.’ While the legal system has grappled with this truism from its inception, only recently have courts begun building an internally coherent approach to ensuring that the law treats animals as feeling creatures who deserve justice.
Join Animal Legal Defense Fund Senior Staff Attorneys Jamie Contreras and David B. Rosengard as they discuss how the legal system treats animal sentience and how a trilogy of Oregon cases recognizing animal sentience points towards a new framework for animals within the law.
This webinar was prerecorded. Watch it now!
- Animals’ Legal Status
- Two Great Legal Victories for Animals in Oregon
- Update: Each Animal Counts!
- Advocating for Justice in Oregon: Neglected Horse Sues Former Owner
- How Animals Differ from Other Types of “Property” Under the Law
- Dogs Are Not Mere Property, Rules Oregon Supreme Court
- Critical Caselaw: Judicial Recognition of Animal Sentience – PPT Presentation (PDF)
- State v. Fessenden Court of Appeals (PDF)
- State v. Fessenden Supreme Court (PDF)
- State v. Newcomb Supreme Court (PDF)
- State v. Nix Supreme Court 2014 (PDF)
- State v. Nix Supreme Court (PDF)
Today the House of Representatives voted 272 to 114 to pass the Big Cat Public Safety Act. Endorsed by the Animal Legal Defense Fund, the bill prohibits the private ownership of big cats and makes it illegal for exhibitors to allow direct contact with cubs.December 3, 2020 Press Release
The Animal Legal Defense Fund filed a lawsuit against the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) over the agency’s critical redactions in a contract between the USDA’s Wildlife Services program and a Colorado slaughterhouse, outlining plans for slaughtering geese rounded up in parks across Denver.November 23, 2020 Press Release
New White Paper Offers Policy Recommendations to Combat Zoonotic Diseases and Pandemic Risk from Factory FarmingThe Animal Legal Defense Fund released the second in a series of white papers — COVID-19 and Factory Farming —providing policy recommendations to address industrial animal agriculture’s role in our heightened risk for zoonotic diseases outbreaks, like COVID-19, and its potential to be the source of the next global pandemic.November 19, 2020 Press Release