PETITION TARGET: United States Congress
Burned in fires, drowned in floods, or battered in hurricanes, millions of farmed animals are left to suffer and die when natural disasters strike in the United States.
Unable to escape captivity and abandoned by their ‘caretakers,’ they are left helpless with no way to fend for themselves.
Currently, this cruelty is completely legal. In fact, farmers are more likely to profit off abandoning animals during natural disasters than they would saving them.
Relocating and evacuating farmed animals is costly, whereas when animals are left to die, farmers are subsidized by the government or paid out by private insurance agencies for financial loss, due to the Livestock Indemnity Program.
In 2022, the Livestock Indemnity Program distributed nearly $47 million dollars to farmers who left their animals during natural disasters, according to Sentient Media. That compensated for the death of 350,000 farmed animals in just one year.
“Massive subsidies to industrial animal agriculture disincentives protecting animals,” Delcianna Winders from Vermont Law School said. It leaves “millions to suffer and die every year.”
Due to the increase in natural disasters worldwide, we can only expect more farm animals to suffer for a payout.
It’s time to stop leaving farmed animals to die.
In January of 2023, the Emergency and Disaster Preparedness for Farm Animals Act (HR 243) was introduced to Congress. This bill would require that farmers create pre-existing disaster preparedness plans to be eligible for some USDA assistance programs.
However, the bill does not specify the methods required in the case of a natural disaster. Nothing in the bill prevents farmers from choosing ‘depopulation’ as their disaster preparedness plan, which is industry terminology for mass killings, often using torturous methods such as induced heatstroke to cause slow and painful deaths.
Farmed animals need our protection. Speak up and sign this petition to urge Congress to not only pass HR 243, but to ensure that non-lethal evacuation plans are required of farmers in the event of a natural disaster to protect the lives of innocent animals.