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Animal Wellness Action Lauds Congressional Leaders Calling for a Global Shutdown of Live Wildlife Markets

U.S. Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC)

U.S. Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC)

The federal lawmakers who acted yesterday know action on a global scale is required to prevent a recurrence of the next microbiological catastrophe.”
— Wayne Pacelle, president of Animal Wellness Action

WASHINGTON, US, USA, April 9, 2020 /EINPresswire.com/ -- Animal Wellness Action today applauded U.S. Senators Cory Booker, D-N.J. and Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. and U.S. Reps. Mike Quigley, D-Ill., and Mike McCaul, R-Texas, for leading a letter signed by more than 60 of their Congressional colleagues calling on global public health and food and agriculture organizations to shutter “live wildlife markets” and to impose “a ban on the international trade in live wildlife that is not intended for conservation purposes.” They sent the letter to directors of the World Health Organisation, World Organisation for Animal Health, and the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization, noting that scientists “studying zoonotic diseases – diseases that jump between animals and humans – have pointed to the close proximity of shoppers, vendors, and both live and dead animals at wildlife markets in countries around the world as prime transmission locations for these pathogens.”

“The viruses can subsequently spread or ‘spill over’ into humans through handling and consumption of wildlife, potentially starting highly contagious outbreaks of new and deadly diseases for which we have no natural immunity -- as we are currently seeing with COVID-19 and have seen with SARS, Ebola, monkeypox and Lassa fever in the recent past,” wrote the Members.

AWA called the letters’ demands proportional and essential given the domestic and global crisis.

“U.S. citizens are sheltering at home, out of work or not at their work offices, or sick in bed or hospital beds because of a highly infectious and sometimes deadly virus launched from a wet market in China,” said Wayne Pacelle, president of Animal Wellness Action. “The federal lawmakers who acted yesterday know action on a global scale is required to prevent a recurrence of the next microbiological catastrophe. Not since World War II has there been a world event of this consequence.”

Animal Wellness Action calls on these lawmakers and others to follow up their letter with domestic legislation to ban live wildlife markets in the United States, to restrict other imports of live wildlife, and to augment the resources of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to interdict illegal wildlife transports. “Keeping animals in the wild and preserving their habitats so we don’t push wildlife into unusual interactions with people must be two goals of U.S. and global policy,” added Pacelle.

With the human toll certain to rise, more than 1.5 million have been infected and 90,000 have died across the globe, with the U.S. having the highest number of cases in the world. “During World War II, the United States was largely protected from attacks by the two oceans that flank us,” added Pacelle. “But in an era of global transportation, an infected person or wild animal can carry the virus on a plane or ship in hours or days. We have to lead with policy-making here at home, but also use our influence with multilateral bodies to advocate for similar global policies. Never before has it been so clear that we are all in this together on this small planet.”

AWA’s staff has written a series of essays about existing and emerging threats from certain animal-use practices, including wet markets, cockfighting, factory farming, game farms, and FDA’s requirements for animal testing.
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The Animal Wellness Foundation (Foundation) is a Los Angeles-based private charitable organization with a mission of helping animals by making veterinary care available to everyone with a pet, regardless of economic ability. We organize rescue efforts and medical services for dogs and cats in need and help homeless pets find a loving caregiver. We are advocates for getting veterinarians to the front lines of the animal welfare movement; promoting responsible pet ownership; and vaccinating animals against infectious diseases such as distemper. We also support policies that prevent animal cruelty and that alleviate suffering. We believe helping animals helps us all.

Animal Wellness Action (Action) is a Washington, D.C.-based 501(c)(4) organization with a mission of helping animals by promoting legal standards forbidding cruelty. We champion causes that alleviate the suffering of companion animals, farm animals, and wildlife. We advocate for policies to stop dogfighting and cockfighting and other forms of malicious cruelty and to confront factory farming and other systemic forms of animal exploitation. To prevent cruelty, we promote enacting good public policies and we work to enforce those policies. To enact good laws, we must elect good lawmakers, and that’s why we remind voters which candidates care about our issues and which ones don’t. We believe helping animals helps us all.

Wayne Pacelle
ANIMAL WELLNESS ACTION
+1 2024200446
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