SPRINGFIELD, Ill., May 16 LAWFUEL – The Law News Wire — …

SPRINGFIELD, Ill., May 16 LAWFUEL – The Law News Wire — The Illinois
Senate today voted 39 to 16 to ban horse slaughter for human consumption,
following the measure’s overwhelming approval last month in the state’s
House of Representatives. While meeting with the Society for Animal
Protective Legislation (SAPL) and Bo Derek, Governor Rod Blagojevich
reaffirmed his support and promised to sign the bill immediately upon
passage.

DeKalb, Ill. is home to the Cavel International Inc. horse
slaughterhouse, one of the three foreign-owned plants remaining in the
United States. It is the only plant actively killing horses, but will have to stop immediately once this act is signed in to law.

“Passage of this bill is an historical step for improving the welfare
of America’s horses,” said SAPL Deputy Director Chris Heyde. “We are
grateful for the leadership of Senator John Cullerton, as well as
Representative Bob Molaro, Governor Blagojevich and the Illinois Department of Agriculture in finally putting an end to the practice in their state.”

Illinois Department of Agriculture Director Chuck Hartke stated that
horse slaughter “is inhumane because our society considers horses to be
companion animals or pets.” He continued, “There is no domestic market for horse meat for human consumption and therefore no need to continue this practice in the state of Illinois.”

Dedicated activist and actor Bo Derek played a crucial role in raising awareness for the bill, traveling to Illinois with SAPL again this year to discuss the issue with state lawmakers. “Horses are an essential part of
the American spirit,” she said. “As a lifelong equestrian and horse owner, I am overjoyed that the Illinois legislature has voted to protect these magnificent animals from this inhumane industry.”

In the US Congress, the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act has
been introduced as H.R. 503 and S. 311 to end horse slaughter for human
consumption and prevent the animals’ export for the same purpose. Passage
of the federal legislation is critical now to ensure America’s horses
aren’t simply exported to an even worse fate outside of the US. For more
information on the national bill, please visit
http://www.saplonline.org/horses.htm.

As the legislative arm of the Animal Welfare Institute, the Society for Animal Protective Legislation is the unsurpassed leader in obtaining laws to benefit animals in need, including the protection of domestic and wild horses.
CONTACT: Chris Heyde, (703) 836-4300

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