It’s great to be an animal in West Hollywood. The city declared itself a “cruelty-free zone” when it passed Resolution 588, which prohibits cosmetics-testing on animals and the use of steel-jaw leg-hold traps, reports Ecouterre.
The city has not stopped there. It has also replaced the term “pet owner” with “guardian,” banned the declawing of cats, outlawed the sale of dogs and cats and prohibited exotic and wild animal performances.
Now West Hollywood can add another animal welfare achievement to the list—the city has officially become the first fur-free municipality in the United States! West Hollywood may just be the “Humane Capital” of the U.S., don’t you think?
All businesses in West Hollywood city limits can no longer legally sell fur and anyone convicted of breaking the new law must cough up $250 in fines and fees.
The ordinance states, “All retail establishments located within the City of West Hollywood will be prohibited from selling, trading, distributing, importing or exporting any fur product on or after September 21, 2013.”
A campaign called “Fur Free WeHo” (WeHo is a common abbreviation for West Hollywood) paved the road for this grand victory as it argued that West Hollywood should “uphold the spirit of Resoultion 558” and revoke support for the fur industry, which causes unimaginable amounts of suffering and kills 50 million animals per year.
Ellen Lavinthal, co-organizer of Fur Free WeHo said, “It’s not just how [the animals] die, which is very painfully. It’s how they live up until they die, in cramped cages, with insufficient food, shelter and water. It’s horrific.”
According to Babble, some retailers are not very pleased with the city’s new law.
“The furs are sometimes the most expensive pieces in the collection, so it affects sales dramatically, especially if you sell it at a larger percentage. To cut off someone’s big-ticket item makes it hard for a business to survive,” said Darrel Adams from the boutique Kin.
The city is thankfully fully committed to the fur ban though and does not expect to ever repeal it.
“I am pleased that the time has come for this ordinance to take effect. Our city attorney has written, and we approved, a strong ordinance that will withstand the test of time,” said West Hollywood Mayor Pro Tempore John D’Amico, the law’s chief sponsor, via the West Hollywood city website.
This ordinance is a dream come true for animal lovers. And we’re certainly cheering here at One Green Planet. Keep up the great work, West Hollywood!
Image source: Chris Yarzab / Flickr