PETITION TARGET: Wyoming Legislature Travel, Recreation, Wildlife & Cultural Resources Committee
UPDATE (3/20/2023): This horrifying bill thankfully died upon reaching a Senate committee, after passing through House with a 57-5 vote. The 2-2 vote from the Senate Agriculture, State and Public Lands and Water Resources Committee means this bill is dead for now! Thanks to everyone who signed our petition and spoke up for these innocent horses! — Lady Freethinker Staff
The U.S.’s iconic wild horses could be rounded up, slaughtered, and shipped for human consumption if one Wyoming legislator gets his way.
Wild horses have been federally protected since 1971. The brutal slaughter of any horse on U.S. soil for human food — domestically or abroad — has been prohibited since 2007. The Department of the Interior also prohibited using taxpayer funds for the destruction of healthy animals for processing into commercial “products” as recently as 2020.
But House Joint Resolution 3 (HR3), proposed by Rep. John Winter, would ravage that progress for these precious animals who already face persecution in the state.
A sole round up in one of Wyoming’s “management” areas, known as the Checkerboard region, aimed to remove more than 3,500 wild horses — many of whom died gruesomely or sustained horrific injuries — while leaving 91 percent of that same land open to for-profit livestock grazing, according to nonprofit In Defense of Animals (IDA).
The horrors that defenseless horses face at slaughterhouses also are well documented. They often endure grueling hours-long transports in overcrowded trucks, without access to food or water. Many die or are seriously injured on the way to the facilities, where the industry then claims the survivors are “humanely” killed — most commonly by having a bolt fired into their brains, followed by their twitching bodies bleeding out.
Lady Freethinker, along with numerous other animal welfare groups, asserts that there is no such thing as humane slaughter. Prior to the shut-down of the last U.S. horse slaughterhouse in 2007, reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) noted rampant cruelty — including horses with broken bones, gaping wounds, and eyeballs hanging from their sockets.
Wild horses — as well as domesticated horses who have been cared for, used, or exploited by people for their entire lives — don’t deserve to end their days in cruel slaughterhouses.
This legislation must not go any further.
Sign our petition urging the Wyoming Legislature’s Committee of Travel, Recreation, Wildlife and Cultural Resources to strike this preposterous bill and instead uphold needed safeguards for federally-protected horses and all horses in the United States.