LA Times reported that several animal rights organizations met with Councilman Paul Koretz on August 1 to support the proposal written by Koretz and fellow councilmen Bob Blumenfield that ban businesses from selling and manufacturing any fur items such as clothing, hats, handbags, or key chains trimmed with real fur.
“The bottom line is that humans do not need to wear the fur of another animal. Not in Los Angeles, not in any other city. To continue to allow the sale of fur is to condone violence,” said at the meeting Brian Ruppenkamp, a member of the activist group Los Angeles Animal Save.
If the law were to pass, LA would be joining West Hollywood, Berkeley, and San Francisco in instating such policies which have legalized similar prohibitions. In San Francisco’s case, the legislation is set to take effect Jan. 1 2019, after the Board of Supervisors’ unanimous decision to prohibit the sale of fur in March.
The backlash has been voice by Keith Kaplan, spokesman for the Fur Information Council of America, a trade group that represents fur manufacturers, retailers, and wholesalers. “What has the ban in West Hollywood really achieved? Nothing. If they can’t find it in West Hollywood, they go right outside West Hollywood to buy it.”
For Kaplan, this type of restrictions just hurt businesses, places a target on one industry, and ignores the freedom of choice for consumers. If Los Angeles passes this law, the group will probably take legal action, according to Kaplan.
At the Council meeting, Koretz asked staffers to research and report back any probable conflicts such as whether there could be an exemption for trapped animals and the legal implications when it comes to the fur hats worn by the Hasidic Jewish community. Other council members were worried about the economic consequences of this ban, including job losses, but Koretz said “Animal cruelty is animal cruelty, and if we lose a few jobs, that’s life.”
This ban would be part of a series of moves by the LA legislature in order to make the city a more ethical and responsible metropolis that protects the welfare of animals.
The City Council has also passed laws that ban the use of bullhooks on circus elephants, and restricted pet shops from selling commercially-bred animals such as dogs, cats, rabbits and instead placing only rescued pets for adoption.
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