May 1, 2009
Club Sandwiches, Not Seals
I've been doing my part to stop the barbaric Canadian seal hunt that takes place every spring for years now, and today I got some great news! Check out the (mass) email I received from Director of Canadian Wildlife Issues Rebecca Aldworth:
You'd think I'd feel defeated after what I've seen. But two weeks since returning home from documenting the Canadian seal slaughter with The The Humane Society of the United States' ProtectSeals team, I'm hopeful.
At last, we're closing in on the end of the commercial seal hunt. I'm struck by what a difference a year can make. Thanks to you and the thousands of people who donated and took action, here are just a few of the victories we can celebrate in 2009:
The HSUS Canadian seafood boycott continues to gain ground -- more than 5,000 businesses and more than 600,000 individuals have pledged not to buy Canadian seafood until the seal hunt ends for good. The fishing industry is losing money, and prices for seal skins have crashed to $15 (CAD) -- an 86 percent drop from 2006. Most fishermen aren't bothering to leave home to join the hunt, and tens of thousands of seals have been spared.
For the first time, Canadians have proposed legislation to support an end to the hunt, and we've found a true champion for seals in the government. Senator Mac Harb introduced the historic bill in the Canadian senate last month after returning from his visit to the ice floes.
The HSUS community dug deep to help seals and met The Giant Steps Foundation's matching gift challenge to raise $500,000 in just a few weeks. That means a total of $1 million dollars will immediately go toward stopping the hunt before it starts next spring.
Russia made headlines worldwide when it announced that it would ban the killing of seals less than a year old this year, effectively ending one of the biggest kills of harp seals in the world. Yuriy Trutnev, Russia's Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology, called the seal slaughter "bloody," and remarked that the killing of defenseless animals can't be deemed a "hunt."
I have hope for an even bigger victory still: This Tuesday, May 5, the European Union is scheduled to vote whether to ban its trade in seal products, cutting off a primary market for the Canadian sealing industry. If you sign up for our mobile alerts and follow The HSUS on Twitter, you'll be the first to know when we hear the results of Parliament's vote.
We can win this, if we stay persistent. It won't be long before the Canadian government agrees it's time to end the slaughter, if only to protect profits.
Thank you again for standing with the ProtectSeals team throughout our expedition to the ice -- I know you'll stick with us as we work to put a final end to this cruelty in the coming year.
To learn more about the hunt, and how you can help save hundreds of thousands of innocent seals, click HERE.