Keep the USDA Transparent and Accountable
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The USDA is charged with ensuring the millions of animals in roadside zoos, puppy mills, and research labs across the country receive the basic care required by the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). Despite this mandate, the USDA fails year after year to fulfill its duty.
Now the USDA proposes action that could dramatically reduce government oversight of facilities like puppy mills. Under the proposal, USDA would decrease inspections at facilities that obtain certifications from industry groups (in other words an organization that represents the interests of roadside zoos could “certify” roadside zoos). These industries profit from abuse and will not be accountable to the public or the animals.
Click here to go to the regulations.gov page and submit a comment to the USDA urging it to reject self-policing. We’ve provided a sample to help you compose your message. But comments should be in your own words. So please take a few minutes to explain why you care about this issue before submitting.
“As a taxpayer, I expect our government agencies to enforce the law. I strongly object to the USDA’s proposed plan to decrease Animal Welfare Act (AWA) inspections in deference to industry groups – allowing entities like roadside zoos, puppy mills, and research labs to largely police themselves. To ensure transparency and accountability, Animal Welfare Act licensees must be regularly inspected by USDA officials.”
We are holding the USDA accountable – thanks to an Animal Legal Defense Fund lawsuit, a court recently ruled that the USDA can no longer automatically rubberstamp license renewals for facilities it knows frequently violate the AWA.
The sweeping Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 — an omnibus federal law passed approximately every five years, commonly known as the “farm bill” — included several important provisions, including some victories for animals.March 11, 2019 Animal Law Update
California Senator Scott Wilk, representing the 21st Senate District, is joining the Animal Legal Defense Fund in calling for common-sense legislation to address the link between animal abuse and violence toward humans.February 27, 2019 Press Release
This week the Animal Legal Defense Fund was joined by several nonprofit animal protection organizations in submitting comments urging the U.S. government not to bow to pressure from the factory farming industry in its regulation of slaughter-free meat.December 20, 2018 Press Release