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Unfortunately, the world is not a very peaceful or safe place for many individuals. From conflict to abuse to exploitation, there is so much cruelty inflicted on both humans and animals. While this can get disheartening and difficult to hear about, petitions are a great way to use your voice for good. Just by signing one, you are a part of helping those who are not treated fairly. You can even share them with your friends and acquaintances to increase your impact.

Through petitions, we can reach those in power and demand justice for others. They are valuable tools for making positive changes in the world. If you are looking for a way to help animals and humans, here are 10 petitions you should sign this week, including Tell IFC to Divest from Factory Farming, Demand a UN Task Force Address Climate change, Keep Funding the Pandemic EBT Act so Children Don’t Go Hungry.

We want to thank you for being the change you wish to see in the world and giving a voice to the voiceless.

1. Ban Stores from Selling Pets from Commercial Breeders in the U.S.

puppies in cage

Source: khlungcenter/Shutterstock

The puppy mill industry is an extremely unethical business that needs to be stopped. Animals are bred over and over, neglected, kept in terrible conditions, denied exercise and socialization, and often born with genetic abnormalities due to inbreeding. The good news is, some states have started fighting against this cruel industry. California, Maryland, and Maine have banned pet stores from carrying animals that come from these commercial breeders. Massachusetts and New York also have legislation in the works. However, there are still 47 states where stores still allow this practice. The laws that currently exist around puppy mills are sparse, not enforced, or nonexistent. Sign this petition to help disrupt this cruel industry of animal abuse and ask every state to pass a law preventing pet stores from selling puppy mill animals.

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2. Keep Funding the Pandemic EBT Act so Children Don’t Go Hungry

Source: CBS This Morning/Youtube

COVID-19 has exacerbated food insecurity across the country. Parents and guardians lost their jobs and children lost access to subsidized meals at school. At the beginning of the pandemic, the U.S. government gave families with children extra money on their food stamps to make up for missing school-provided lunches. This program, which was called the Pandemic EBT Act, saved many families for many months until it ended in August 2020. Sign this petition to tell legislators to continue funding the Pandemic EBT Act until the pandemic is over!

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3. Stop Animal Abuse, Abandonment, and Neglect in the U.S.

sad dog

Source: gostua/Shutterstock

In August, a man brought his bulldog to a trashcan in front of a supermarket and literally threw his dog away in the trash. The owner of a nearby store eventually saw the dog and rushed out to save him. He brought him to an animal hospital where they confirmed that the dog was dead. However, the dog wasn’t dead when his owner threw him away. The doctor said that the dog probably died of heatstroke while in the trashcan. This poor dog suffered so much. We need laws that better prevent future incidents like this one. Senator Bernie Sanders has been a long-term advocate for Animal rights, and has co-sponsored numerous pieces of legislation to protect endangered species, as well as to combat animal cruelty. Sign this petition to ask Bernie Sanders to take charge of this issue and draft legislation to protect animals and stop animal abusers!

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4. Free Human Rights Lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh

Source: CBS News/Youtube

Nasrin Sotoudeh, a human rights lawyer in Iran, has been in prison for two years for defending feminist activists who challenged the country’s mandatory headscarf law. She was arrested in 2018, sentenced to 48 lashes, and 38 years in prison. When her daughter went to visit Sotoudeh in prison, Khandan was briefly arrested and could still be put on trial in the future. When COVID-19 hit Iran, officials agreed to temporarily release some prisoners, but not political prisoners. Sotoudeh staged two hunger strikes six months apart, to demand the release of specific political prisoners whose immune systems were compromised and whose lives were in danger. On September 20, she was hospitalized and her family wasn’t even informed by officials. They heard from another prisoner. She needs to be released so that she can be with her family and properly recover. Sign this petition to demand that they immediately drop all charges against Nasrin Sotoudeh and her daughter!

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5. Demand the UN Form a Task Force to Address Climate change

Source: World Wildlife Fund/Youtube

According to the Living Planet Report 2020 provided by the World Wildlife Fund and the Zoological Society of London, worldwide animal populations have plummeted 68% on average since 1970. In areas closest to the equator, animal populations shrank by approximately 94%. Human activities are causing grave harm to this planet. There need to be immediate, meaningful steps taken to fight Climate change and its effects. Sign this petition to ask the UN to form a special task force to address the contributing factors to the huge decline in animal populations in the tropical Americas.

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6. End Intersex Surgeries on Babies

Source: VICE News/Youtube

Being born intersex, that is having genitals or internal organs that don’t perfectly fit into the binary categories of “male” or “female,” is actually a fairly common occurrence. However, doctors still perform surgeries on these children to make them look “normal.” The surgeries are not about health, but purely cosmetic. They can even cause pain, decreased sensitivity, or a need for more surgeries and hormone replacements later in life. LGBTQI+ activists and human rights organizations have been speaking out against these surgeries as a violation of human rights and basic ethics around consent. Fortunately, some hospitals are starting to no longer allow clinicians to perform these surgeries on intersex children. It’s time for the American Pediatric Surgeon Association (APSA), the largest professional organization for pediatric surgeon specialists in the United States, to do the same! They have tremendous influence and can regulate the industry’s practices. Sign this petition to demand an end to intersex surgeries on babies! Tell the American Pediatric Surgeon Association to take action now!

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7.  Urge Florida, Texas, and Louisiana to Commit to Carbon Neutrality by 2040

mosquito swarm

Source: Anton Starikov/Shutterstock

After Hurricane Laura swept through Louisiana, swarms of mosquitoes arrived and started bleeding out helpless animals. Within just a few weeks, over 300 cows, scores of deer, and several horses were killed by these mosquitoes. Mosquito season has progressively gotten worse due to the warming waters and longer hurricane season caused by Climate change. Louisiana, Texas, and Florida, three states that have been hit hard by these mosquito swarms, are lax when it comes to greenhouse gas regulations and other policies addressing Climate change. They need to be a part of the global effort to be more sustainable to mitigate the effects of Climate changeSign this petition to demand that the governors of Florida, Texas, and Louisiana commit to becoming carbon neutral by 2040!

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8. Send Elephants at Oregon Zoo to a Sanctuary

elephant at zoo

Source: ARTYOORAN/Shutterstock

In 2008, Oregon zoo received money from a bond issue. Rather than using it to expand the living area for their elephants, they have created elephant exhibits and breeding programs which are essentially profit-driven exploitation. Zoos cause so much physical and emotional distress to animals. Many animals in captivity suffer from zoochosis, which leads them to display signs of psychological distress, such as rocking back and forth, pacing, and other self-harm behaviors. Now, two of the elephants also have tuberculosis. It is time for the Oregon Zoo to close its exhibit and retire the elephants to a sanctuary. These animals need to Sign this petition to demand that the Oregon Zoo surrender their elephants to a sanctuary where they can live out the rest of their lives in peace.

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9. Demand Universal Healthcare and Funding for Mental Healthcare in the U.S.

Source: CBS News/Youtube

COVID-19 has increased the amount of stress that many people are under on a day-to-day basis. In addition to the pandemic itself, people have to deal with its effects such as food insecurity, job loss, and less social interaction. These secondary effects of the deadly pandemic are all collapsing together to cause a mental health crisis. Researchers have found that the pandemic may have resulted in an additional 75,000 deaths from substance use and suicide. The pandemic already made it clear months ago that we need a universal healthcare system in the U.S. This latest evidence just proves the case even more! The pandemic is still spreading rapidly and affecting people’s daily lives. Thus, its secondary effects are going to persist as well. Sadly, it can be difficult to get mental health care in the U.S. covered by insurance or for an affordable price. Mental health care is necessary, especially in times like this. Sign this petition to demand universal healthcare in the United States and to demand federal funding for mental health access for everyone!

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10.  Tell IFC to Divest from Factory Farming

factory farm pig

Source: Mark Agnor/Shutterstock

Because larger livestock animals mean a larger profit, they are bred to unnatural sizes and overfed. They are also kept in tiny changes, ripped away from their mothers after birth, and subject to so many different kinds of abuse. Suffering is inherent to the very structure of factory farming. It is not only unconscionably cruel – it is unsustainable. Since 2010, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) has pumped almost two billion dollars into the factory farm industrial complex. Not only does this cause animal suffering, it also is one of the top contributors of air Pollution, water Pollution, and deforestation. Experts warn that if large financial institutions like IFC do not transfer their Support to more environmentally friendly methods of food production, there will soon be little left of the earth’s vital lifegiving resources. Sign this petition to demand that IFC divest from factory farming, and invest in humane, sustainable practices…and our future!

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