Governor Ige signs legislation banning import of wild animals for entertainment.
On December 21, 2018, Hawaii became the second US state to ban wild animal circus acts! Thank you Governor David Ige for signing into law rule amendments to ban the import of elephants, tigers, bears, and other “dangerous” wild animals for circus and carnival performances and exhibitions. It follows adoption of the legislation by the Small Business Regulatory Review Board earlier in the month. Never again will animals suffer in the Aloha state as poor Tyke did, her shocking and horrific death on the streets of Honolulu in 1994 never to be forgotten. Huge thanks also to tireless animal advocates Tyler Ralston, Cathy Goeggel of Animal Rights Hawai’i, Inga Gibson of Pono Advocacy, Stephanie Hendrick of Hawaiian Humane Society, and Keith Dane of The Humane Society of the United States. It took a village!
On September 25, 2018, the Hawaii Board of Agriculture voted 6-3 to adopt rule amendments to ban the import of certain “dangerous” wild animals for circus and carnival performances and exhibitions. ADI welcomes this historic move, as the first US state to stop circus suffering for wild animals – we supported the effort and submitted written testimony, and now send our shout out of thanks to the local supporters who’ve worked on this for years, some since personally witnessing Tyke’s dreadful end 24 years ago. The legislation next goes to the Small Business Regulatory Review Board (SBRRB), then to Governor Ige for signature.
Hawaii could become the first US state to ban the use of wild animal circus and carnival acts.
In 2015, Hawaii’s Governor Ige pledged to discontinue permitting for wild animal acts; the Hawaii Board of Agriculture has yet to act on the necessary rule changes. However, on September 25, the Board will consider proposed rule amendments identifying certain wild animals as “dangerous,” including elephants, tigers, and bears, among others, and prohibiting their import into the state for use in circuses and carnivals. ADI supports the proposed rule changes and urges the Board to vote “yes,” and make good on the Governor’s pledge to end cruel and dangerous wild animal acts.
ADI has worked with local advocates over the years to support this measure for the animals, especially Tyke and Daisy – whose tragic stories still live in the hearts of Hawaiians – we applaud and join in their commitment these many years to end circus animal cruelty.
Now is the time to act for change! Tomorrow, September 25 at 9am local time, the Board will consider the amendments and is taking public comments in person and via email (details below). If you are available, please consider attending the hearing to speak for those who can’t.
If you plan to present oral testimony at the public hearing, please sign up when you arrive.
Other ways you can help:
To support this historic opportunity to make Hawaii the first state in the US to ban wild animal circus acts, please send a polite message today urging the Board of Agriculture to finalize this proposed rule change to end circus animal cruelty.
Email your support to addressed to Chairman Scott Enright and Hawaii Board of Agriculture Members at HDOA.BOARD.TESTIMONY@HAWAII.GOV. Make sure to include the word “TESTIMONY” in the subject line.
You can use this template email:
“SUBJECT: TESTIMONY – in support of proposed amendments to Ch.4-71
Dear Chairman Enright and Hawaii Board of Agriculture Members,
I urge you to support the proposed amendments to Ch.4-71, to ban the import of dangerous, wild non-domestic animals for performance or exhibition in circuses and carnivals.
Overwhelming evidence shows that animals in traveling circuses endure prolonged confinement, and long, grueling journeys (especially for those making the trip to Hawaii); physical and social deprivation; brutal control methods and physical violence. Wild animals don’t belong in chains or boxcars; Hawaii has learned the hard way that it’s neither appropriate nor safe to force wild animals to perform unnatural tricks for the sole purpose of human amusement.
Wild animals living in a state of severe stress, confinement, and abuse are at high risk of lashing out or trying to escape. Circus workers and members of the public, including children, have been killed and maimed by circus animals.
Let’s learn the lessons Tyke and Daisy taught us – please use this opportunity to set those terrible wrongs right; it’s time to protect animals and our citizens by passing this important animal protection and public safety rule amendment.
RSVP to ADI at firstname.lastname@example.org or 323-935-2234.