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The coronavirus pandemic has brought wet markets to everyone’s attention. It wasn’t something that was often discussed and in fact there were many worries around the world about their operations. They are markets with open stalls of seafood, meat, and more. Many have live animals and slaughter them on site. The coronavirus has been traced back to a wet market in Wuhan, China. But Asia isn’t the only place with locations that have breeding grounds for zoonotic diseases.

In fact, 75 percent of new infectious diseases come from wild and domesticated animals. Every year, more and more illegal bushmeat is smuggled into the UK. This is just another possibility for a pandemic. And the U.S. is no stranger to the dangers of another pandemic.

Livestock auctions and live animal markets in the U.S. also put everyone at risk of a zoonotic disease that sweeps the world. As this petition explains: “Auctions confine animals from different farms in overcrowded pens, sometimes for days. Healthy animals are housed with sick ones. The dead may be left for hours or days before removal from a pen.”

Studies also show that employees at these type of markets test positive for viruses that originate in animals. We cannot just call for an end to wet markets in other countries without acknowledging how our own practices put the public at risk. Just recently, it was revealed that there are 80 wet markets in New York.

Sign this petition demanding an end to live animal markets in the United States.

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