MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - May 2, 2012) - Rebecca Aldworth, executive director of Humane Society International/Canada, issued the following statement in support of Canadian Sen. Mac Harb's bill to end Canada's commercial seal hunt.
"We've recently returned from the East Coast of Canada, where we observed yet another year of exceptionally poor sea ice conditions and massive seal pup mortality as a result. Yet instead of taking action to protect the seals, the Canadian government authorized sealers to club and shoot every surviving seal pup they found.
Despite a record high quota for harp seals and millions of dollars of government assistance for the sealing industry, the 2012 sealing season has been a bust for sealers. Even the artificial life support provided by unwilling taxpayers cannot keep this globally condemned, senseless slaughter alive. Between market and sea ice conditions, the end of the seal slaughter is inevitable.
Senator Harb's bill is timely and would effectively end the commercial seal slaughter in Canada. HSI/Canada further proposes that any legislation to end the seal slaughter be paired with a federal sealing industry buyout. This plan would involve the federal government ending the commercial seal slaughter, providing immediate compensation to sealers and investing in economic alternatives in the communities involved. Polling shows half of sealers holding an opinion are already in support of this plan and the overwhelming majority of Canadians are willing to fund it. Given sealers and other Canadians are willing to move beyond commercial sealing, it is time our government acted."
Humane Society International/Canada is a leading force for animal protection, representing tens of thousands of members and constituents across the country. HSI/Canada has active programs in companion animals, wildlife and habitat protection, marine mammal preservation and farm animal welfare. HSI Canada is proud to be a part of Humane Society International-one of the largest animal protection organizations in the world, with more than eleven million members and constituents globally-on the Web at hsicanada.ca
Media Contact: Dean Pogas