April 28, 2007

The US House of Representatives has resoundingly reaffirmed what it originally declared in 1971 - America's wild, free-roaming horses and burros must be protected from commercial exploitation and the slaughter industry.

Tthe House passed a bill with a vote of 277 to 136 that restores the prohibition on the commercial sale and slaughter of wild free-roaming horses and burros.

"Our elected representatives have listened to the truth about wild horses," said an elated Chris Heyde, deputy legislative director of the Society for Animal Protective Legislation.

"Despite the enormous amount of misinformation being spread by pro-horse slaughter individuals, the facts remain clear: wild horses are not to blame for rangeland destruction, and they are not starving to death."

In late 2004, a provision stripping away the original Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act's decades-old protections was adopted without public awareness or Congressional oversight. This latest law change, reintroduced in the 110th Congress by House Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Nick Rahall, effectively stops the Bureau of Land Management from implementing what Heyde called "this reprehensible measure".

"We knew the House of Representatives would continue to listen to the will of the American people, and now they must put a permanent end to horse slaughter for human consumption," Heyde added. "There are far too few of these national treasures. They deserve to live free on our public lands, and we must ensure their future welfare."

The House and Senate are poised to take the next step in finally ending horse slaughter. The public must demand passage of the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, he said, saying it was the only bill that would permanently ban all horse slaughter for human consumption.