California: Ask Governor to Sign Bills Protecting Animals from Trophy Hunting, Sexual Abuse, and Cruel Circuses

Photo by Donyanedomam

We need your help to ensure that three significant animal welfare bills currently sitting on Governor Gavin Newsom's desk are signed into law. One would protect bobcats, one would strengthen the law against animal sexual assault, and a third would protect exotic animals used in circuses.

What You Can Do
Please email Gov. Newsom and urge him to uphold California's reputation as a leader on animal welfare by signing these bills. These emails must be sent through the form on his website. In the drop-down menu next to "Please choose your subject," select the correct bill number, then indicate that your position is "Pro" on the next page and enter your message. Please repeat this process to send a separate message for each bill.

Suggested language:

AB 1254: As a constituent, I urge you to sign AB 1254 to prohibit the sport hunting of bobcats until at least 2025. Beyond that date, the Fish and Game Commission could reopen a hunting season only if certain conditions are met. The bill would not prohibit lethal take to protect human safety, public property, and livestock, or for scientific research. The trophy hunting of bobcats is both unpopular and poor wildlife management. Since bobcats are no longer trapped for their fur, are not classified as a game species, and are not killed for food, they are now hunted solely for sport and display. An April 2019 poll showed that nearly 70 percent of California voters are opposed to this practice, and this charismatic species helps bring in part of the enormous tourism revenue generated by wildlife viewing. Bobcats are also a keystone species and thus an indispensable part of healthy ecosystems. They help keep prey populations in check, which shields farmers and local communities from conflict with "nuisance" species. The trophy hunting of bobcats does not align with the values of the majority of Californians, including mine, and I hope you will sign AB 1254.

AB 611: As a constituent, I urge you to sign AB 611, which would strengthen California's law against animal sexual assault by extending its coverage to all animals, authorizing the seizure of animals who have been abused in this manner, and adding animal sexual assault to the list of cruelty crimes that can bar an offender from owning or even residing with an animal. Animal sexual assault is abhorrent and cruel, often resulting in serious injury to or death of the animal. It is also the single strongest predictor of increased risk for committing child sexual abuse, making it a red flag for the likelihood of violence against individuals. AB 611 would enhance California's ability to protect both animals and its communities from sexually violent offenders. The sexual abuse of animals does not align with the values of the majority of Californians, including mine, and I hope you will sign AB 611.

SB 313: As a constituent, I urge you to sign SB 313, the Circus Cruelty Prevention Act, to ban the use of wild and exotic animals for entertainment in circuses. This legislation does not impact accredited zoos and sanctuaries. The elephants, tigers, monkeys, and other animals used in performances are deprived of nearly everything that is important to their well-being. They are kept in small cages, denied the opportunity to engage in physical activity and form social bonds with members of their own species, and required to spend endless hours in transit. Wild animals in circuses also pose a danger to public safety. These animals are inherently unpredictable and remain wild despite brutal "training" to control them, and such close proximity to the public creates a serious riskas evidenced by the many instances of attacks and injuries to both humans and animals. The exploitation of wild animals for entertainment does not align with the values of the majority of Californians, including mine, and I hope you will sign SB 313.

Thank you for all you do for animals

Sincerely,

Cathy Liss
President

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