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 Slow Ship Speeds to Protect Whales, Veto Anti-Trans School Sports Legislation, and Protect Horses From Slaughter.

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

1. Turn Off Lights at Night in Large Building to Protect Birds

A recent study found that up to 200 birds are dying every night at McCormick Place, a large convention center in downtown Chicago. While this statistic is heartbreaking, the researchers also provided a solution: turning off the lights at night. Research estimates that if the building turned off its lights at night, 11 times fewer bird collisions would occur during the spring migration season and 6 times fewer during the fall migration season. Thus, thousands of birds would be saved. Sign this petition to convince the McCormick Place convention center to prioritize birds and turn off as many lights as possible!

2. Slow Ship Speeds to Protect Whales

Earlier this year, researchers with the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced the exciting discovery of a new whale species in the Gulf of Mexico. Sadly, these “Gulf of Mexico whales” are severely endangered as only around 50 remain. Some of the biggest threats to whales include climate change-caused starvation, noise pollution, being caught as bycatch, and colliding with ships. Nighttime is particularly dangerous because that is when whales are often closer to the surface. Fortunately, the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), has filed a petition urging the NOAA to implement a speed limit for ships operating off the U.S. coast to reduce collisions and noise pollution. Sign this petition to tell the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to require all vessels in the Gulf of Mexico to reduce their traveling speeds and protect the lives of all whales!

3. Shift to Renewable, Clean Energy Production

On May 7, one of our nation’s largest fuel pipelines was hit with a cyberattack that shut down operations. Colonel Pipeline, the operator of the pipeline, delivers over half of the jet fuel and automobile gasoline on the East Coast, which means that the shutdown caused huge backups. The US’s over-reliance on fossil fuels is completely unsustainable due to risks such as this one as well as climate change. Our country must shift to clean, renewable energy sources as quickly as possible! Sign this petition to demand the United States expand its energy production into clean, renewable sources – no more fossil fuel pipelines!

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4. Invest in Eco-Friendly Rail System in the US

The transportation sector in the U.S. makes up a huge chunk of the country’s greenhouse gas emissions, with planes, trains, and automobiles being the worst polluters. Trains, however, are not only much more eco-friendly, but also accessible. The US currently centers cars and provides a large amount of funding for car-related infrastructure. Big Oil, which the government heavily subsidizes, also lobbies to keep America like this, despite its environmental and social costs. While the U.S. federal government does contribute towards our only real passenger rail system, Amtrak, that contribution is pitiful in its amount — especially when compared with the subsidies handed to airlines, car manufacturers, and fossil fuel corporations every year. It’s time to catch up to other countries by creating a much bigger rail system that runs on renewable energy sources. Sign this petition to demand that President Joe Biden’s administration invest in a 21st century, high-speed, eco-friendly rail system for the whole country!

5. Veto Anti-Trans School Sports Legislation

In the first six months of 2021, over 100 anti-transgender bills have been introduced across 38 states, including 28 bills that will ban transgender children from participating in sports that match their gender.  While supporters of these attacks on trans students argue that they just want fairness in women’s sports, that could not be further from the truth. States with trans-inclusive policies actually saw no decline in girls’ participation in sports or any trend of trans girls dominating cisgender girls. These laws are just a way to ostracize and exclude trans kids from participating in activities with their peers. They are hateful, promote harmful gender stereotypes, and need to be stopped. Sports are so important for young people’s development, as they learn so many valuable skills and develop important social support. Excluding trans kids from sports will have a terrible impact on their physical, mental, and emotional well-being. Sign this petition to demand state governors support trans youth by vetoing anti-trans school sports legislation!

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6. Increase Funding For Lower-Income Schools

Because much of the funding for public schools comes from property taxes, the amount of money that schools around the country receive is vastly different. Schools with students from higher-income and predominantly white families often receive around 23 billion more dollars than schools with students from lower-income and predominantly non-white backgrounds. This inequality is unacceptable. Students should not get unequal educational resources as a result of their socioeconomic background. Fortunately, Joe Biden’s 2022 budget proposal could help. It includes $20 billion for school districts in need as well as monetary incentives for states that put effort into leveling out the playing field between their richer and poorer districts. Sign this petition to tell Congress to pass the 2022 budget proposal that includes $20 billion for impoverished school districts!

7.  Find Person Who is Attacking Pelicans

Since March 2021, at least 30 pelicans have turned up injured and mutilated in Southern California. The Wetlands and Wildlife Care Center is working to save each of the victims, but so far only 10 have survived. The Brown pelican population has already suffered due to human activity, especially the use of DDT in the 70s. Climate change has also disrupted their breeding habits. Now they are facing more violence from humans and it’s absolutely unacceptable. The last spate of violence included someone slashing open their throats and now they are coming in with mangled wings and broken bones. To help the Wetlands and Wildlife Care Center save these pelicans, you can donate hereSign this petition to keep pressure on local authorities to prioritize finding the culprit and stopping the attacks!

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8. Include Independent Observer on All of Australia’s Live Transport Ships

Live animal transports are an incredibly cruel and inhumane part of the animal agriculture industry and they need to be stopped. While we work towards this goal and the ultimate goal of ending animal agriculture, we also have to ensure that governments and corporations stick to their word regarding welfare regulations. A few years ago, the Australian government created the “independent observer” program for their live animal exports, which received much criticism as a result of multiple catastrophes and mass animal deaths. Theoretically, this program was put in place so all live animals would be taken care of and watched over by an official whose job is to make sure they don’t die from heat, cold, starvation, injury, etc. However, each year the number of independent observers deployed on ships has decreased all the way down to 2 in January 2020. The program was shut down during the pandemic as a result of independent observers being labeled “non-essential” personnel. Meanwhile, countless sheep, cows, and horses have still been shoved onto these overcrowded, unsanitary ships headed for slaughter.  According to the government’s Department of Agriculture, the program won’t resume until mid-2022 at the earliest, which means mistreatment, cruelty, and possibly death will just continue for another agonizing year, at least. Sign this petition to demand that the Australian government reimplement its full policy of requiring independent observers on all live animal export ships!

9. Protect Domestic Workers

Domestic workers cover a wide range of completely vital but extremely taxing jobs in the United States; however, what they receive in return often does not reflect that. Domestic workers are not included in the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, meaning that they aren’t entitled to a minimum wage, overtime pay, or protections against child labor. They also aren’t included in the Occupational Health and Safety Act, so their employers are not required to ensure safe working conditions. Domestic workers can’t unionize and they aren’t even legally protected from physical or sexual abuse. Every single human being deserves their basic human rights to be protected in the workplace. These workers need vital protections against exploitation by their employers. Sign this petition demanding that Congress introduce and pass a law that would create a National Domestic Workers Bill of Rights!

10. Pass the SAFE Act to Protect Horses From Slaughter

 

The US sends around 100,000 horses to slaughter every year. Many of these horses are healthy and could be sent to new loving homes. Sadly, at the auctions, “kill buyers” bid higher prices than rescues or caring horse owners can possibly afford. As a result, these poor horses are sent on journeys that can last over 24-hours in cramped, unsanitary conditions. Then, they are slaughtered, often without proper stunning beforehand, causing immense pain and suffering. While the last horse slaughterhouse in the US technically closed in 2007, the ban is temporary and could be revoked anytime. Plus, the US continues to send all of these horses to Canada and Mexico to be slaughtered. Fortunately, new legislation seeks to ban the cruel practice of exporting horses to be slaughtered abroad as well as in the US. Towards the end of May, the Save America’s Forgotten Equines (SAFE) Act was reintroduced in Congress by Representatives Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) and Vern Buchanan (R-FL). Sign this petition to tell Congress to pass the SAFE Act without delay, and save the horses!

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