Action Alert – LA City Council to vote on elephant ban

On Wednesday, October 23 (10:00AM PST), the Los Angeles City Council will be voting on proposals to ban the use of elephants in circuses and other traveling exhibitions in the city of Los Angeles by prohibiting the use of elephants and exotic animals completely and/or banning accepted elephant management tools.  If either proposal passes, performing elephants will be outlawed in Los Angeles.
Please take a moment to contact each member of the Los Angeles City Council with a short e-mail to say you OPPOSE any measure that would prohibit elephants and other exotic animals from visiting Los Angeles.  Encourage your friends and family to send e-mails as well, especially those that live in the Los Angeles area.  Anyone who lives in the Los Angeles area is also urged to follow-up with City Council members by phone before Wednesday’s vote.

Sample talking points for your communications are listed below, but please use your own words and your own experiences as a circus animal supporter to politely express your opposition to a performing elephant ban.  Be sure the subject line of your e-mails indicates you are opposed to banning circus elephants.  Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter, and if you have any questions, or if you are able to attend Wednesday’s hearing in person, please contact Mary Lou Kelly at mkelly@feldinc.com<mailto:mkelly@feldinc.com>.

Thank you!

Los Angeles City Council members:

Councilmember Gilbert Cedillo                  (213) 473-7001                  councilmember.cedillo@lacity.org
Councilmember Paul Krekorian                (213) 473-7002                  councilmember.krekorian@lacity.org
Councilmember Bob Blumenfield            (213) 473-7003                  councilmember.blumenfield@lacity.org
Councilmember Tom LaBonge                  (213) 473-7004                  councilmember.labonge@lacity.org
Councilmember Paul Koretz                        (213) 473-7005                  paul.koretz@lacity.org
Councilmember Nury Martinez                (213) 473-7006                  councilmember.martinez@lacity.org
Councilmember Felipe Fuentes                (213) 473-7007                  councilmember.fuentes@lacity.org
Councilmember Bernard Parks                  (213) 473-7008                  councilmember.parks@lacity.org
Councilmember Curren D. Price, Jr.        (213) 473-7009                  councilmember.price@lacity.org
Councilmember Herb J. Wesson, Jr.        (213) 473-7010                  councilmember.wesson@lacity.org
Councilmember Mike Bonin                        (213) 473-7011                  councilmember.bonin@lacity.org
Councilmember Mitchell Englander        (213) 473-7012                  councilmember.englander@lacity.org
Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell                (213) 473-7013                  councilmember.ofarrell@lacity.org
Councilmember Jose Huizar                        (213) 473-7014                  councilmember.huizar@lacity.org
Councilmember Joe Buscaino                    (213)-473-7015                  councildistrict15@lacity.org

Main phone (City Hall information):  (213) 473-3231
Website: http://lacity.org/index.htm, click on City Government for City Council information

Sample talking points:

The following are suggestions for your correspondence, but please use your own words, and you do not need to include every bullet point.  Please keep all correspondence respectful.
• Tell the Council members that you are OPPOSED to any measure that would prevent circuses and other travelling exhibitors with elephants from visiting Los Angeles.

• All circuses are required to have a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) exhibitor’s license.  USDA conducts regular unannounced inspections of performing animals and their stable areas, and their inspection reports are a matter of public record.

• Circuses and other animal exhibitors are also subject to state and local animal cruelty laws and permit requirements in Los Angeles and the state of California.  Such regulations provide protection to all performing animals and allow for the prosecution of those who neglect or mistreat the animals in their care.

• Millions of American families support and enjoy traditional circuses with elephants and other exotic animals, including many thousands who attend shows in Los Angeles.  It is wrong to deprive them of the right to choose to do so.

• Circuses and other traveling exhibitors with performing animals contribute to the local economies of the communities they perform in and support hundreds of jobs for local arena and other workers.

• If any animal is being mistreated in any environment, the right answer is to enforce existing laws and regulations to punish bad actors as opposed to punishing an entire industry and the public who enjoy circuses.

• Circus elephants and other performing animals are well cared for and it only makes sense that circuses would take good care of them.  In fact, performing circus animals generally are healthier and live longer than their counterparts in zoos.

• Proponents of performing animal bans mischaracterize or misunderstand the facts about the training and handling of circus animals. Most of the organizations that advocate such bans do so as part of a larger, animal rights agenda which opposes all or most human interaction with animals.