Equine Protection Measures Advance

The House of Representatives passed two of AWI’s equine welfare priorities as part of the transportation and infrastructure package (HR 3684). One is an amendment banning the transport of equines to slaughter. Led by Representatives Troy Carter (D-LA), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), and a bipartisan team of 11 other lawmakers, this measure would effectively shut down the predatory trade whereby horses are transported out of the United States to foreign slaughterhouses. The second is the Horse Transportation Safety Act (HTSA). Championed by Representative Steve Cohen (D-TN), the HTSA would prohibit the dangerous transport of horses in double-deck trailers designed for much shorter livestock.

photo by Tom Tietz
photo by Tom Tietz

In another positive development for equine welfare, the fiscal year 2022 House Interior appropriations bill includes strong provisions to promote the humane treatment of wild horses and burros and reform the Bureau of Land Management’s misguided approach, which has long relied on removing horses from the range and keeping them in costly holding facilities. AWI successfully advocated for a portion of the BLM’s budget to be set aside for the implementation and development of safe and reversible fertility control methods—such as the widely supported PZP vaccine—to help keep herds in their natural habitats.
Finally, Senators Mike Crapo (R-ID) and Mark Warner (D-VA) recently reintroduced the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act (S 2295)—legislation to combat the painful and abusive practices inflicted upon Tennessee walking horses and related breeds to create an exaggerated high-stepping gait for competition. Earlier this year, a bipartisan coalition of 114 representatives and 48 senators pressed Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to reissue a rule—frozen by the prior administration—that would strengthen the Horse Protection Act and accomplish many of the PAST Act’s goals.

Please ask your senators to cosponsor S 2295. You can send your senators a message through AWI’s Compassion Index or send letters via postal mail to:

The Honorable [full name of your senator]
US Senate
Washington, DC 20510

(If you are uncertain who your US senators are, you can call 202-224-3121.)