LOS ANGELES – Today Councilmember Bob Blumenfield introduced a measure to ban the manufacture and sale of fur products throughout Los Angeles. This motion, co-presented by Councilmember Paul Koretz and seconded by Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell, would take effect in January of 2020 and would specifically prohibit the sale of products such as apparel made in whole or in part of fur or any fashion accessory, such as handbags, shoes, hats, earmuffs, and jewelry.
“It is time to move past the arcane practice of killing animals for goods,” said Blumenfield. “Los Angeles must be a leader in this effort, stop the unnecessary killing of animals and finally eliminate this vile market.”
Marc Ching, Founder and CEO of the Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation said, “In the end the truth is, there is no humane way to skin an animal for its fur. This legislative act is not just about taking a stand. It is about compassion, about morality- and about what it means to be human.”
“The fur trade is senseless and brutal to animals. Today’s motion to stop the manufacturing and retail sales of animal parts is long overdue,” said Councilmember Paul Koretz. “These beautiful animals deserve better than the cruel treatment they receive at the hands of fur ranchers, especially if it is to create trivial fur fashion items. The world looks to Los Angeles for fashion trends and this will be one we can be proud of.”
More than fifty million animals including foxes, chinchilla, minks, raccoons, dogs and rabbits are killed for their fur every year. According to the World Society for the Protection of Animals, eighty-five percent of these animals are raised and killed on factory fur farms. The fur industry is one that has consistently been associated with inhumane practices. Animals who are cultivated solely for their fur spend their lives in cramped cages, subject to deplorable living conditions. These animals are then killed in inhumane ways to preserve the quality of the pelt above all else. Common practices include gassing, electrocution, suffocation and neck breaking. Electrocuting fur-bearing animals anally and genitally is a slaughter method used frequently in the industry to limit damage to the fur. Currently, in California cities such as West Hollywood, Berkeley and San Francisco have adopted similar bans on the sale of fur products.
Considering the wide available alternatives, Blumenfield strongly believes that the demand for fur products does not justify the unnecessary killing and the cruel treatment of fur-bearing animals. As more cities and countries pass restrictive legislation, more companies will stop using fur and alternatives will continue to improve. Additionally, the Southern California climate doesn't justify fur and as the fashion and creative capital of Western United States, many talented designers have already begun transitioning from fur clothing and accessories. Most recently, fashion companies such as Michael Kors, Jimmy Choo, Versace and Gucci have made commitments to remove fur from their line of products.
When the Animal Hope and Wellness Foundation presented their undercover footage from fur farms, the cruelty prevalent in the industry compelled Blumenfield to find a legislative solution. Los Angeles is the second largest city in America, and this legislative act will set the tone for a more animal-friendly future.
Blumenfield has been an animal rights advocate throughout his career and has authored many pieces of humane legislation on both the state and local levels. Recently Blumenfield authored a motion called “Cruelty-Free Los Angeles” which will ensure that the City of Los Angeles only purchases supplies such as cleaning products and hand soaps that are free from animal testing.