A bill banning the sale of fur in California has been signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom.
The new legislation, presented by Assemblywoman Laura Friedman, has been described as ‘revolutionary’ by campaigner group In Defense of Animals, which says it will ‘spare untold numbers of fur-bearing animals from agonizing deaths and could potentially lead to the end of the fur industry worldwide’.
California and fur
The state of California has led the charge when it comes to anti-fur legislation, with the new law preceded by city-wide bans to sell the material in San Francisco, Berkeley, West Hollywood, and Los Angeles.
“California is a leader when it comes to animal welfare, and today that leadership includes banning the sale of fur,” Governor Gavin Newsom said.
‘A death knell’
“California’s groundbreaking new law sounds the death knell for the sickeningly cruel fur industry and marks a major victory for animals, people, and the environment,” Fleur Dawes, Communications Director for In Defense of Animals, said in a statement sent to Plant Based News.
“The enactment of AB 44 reflects the evolving attitudes of compassionate Californians who reject ‘fashion’ made from tortured animals, and paves the way for other states – and ultimately, the world – to go fur-free.”
Today CA made history – #AB44 was signed into law! After decades of efforts from animal welfare advocates, we are now the first state in the nation to ban fur. CA has no place for the inhumane & unsustainable treatment of animals. Now for other states to follow in our legacy. pic.twitter.com/1WVtz517ig
— Laura Friedman (@laurafriedman43) October 12, 2019
“We are grateful for the overwhelming support of the California State Legislature, Governor Newsom, Assemblywoman Friedman, caring Californians, and the unwavering dedication of animal activists who have worked tirelessly to defend animals from the cruel practices of the fur industry,” added Marilyn Kroplick, M.D., President of In Defense of Animals.
“In Defense of Animals will continue to work with dedicated activists and organizations to make fur history across the United States and around the world.”
‘A historic day’
Animal rights charity PETA also praised the move, saying it was ‘proud’ to have worked with legislators.
“Today is a historic day for animals in California, including those who have been whipped into performing in circuses, or skinned alive for their fur or skin,” Tracy Reiman, Executive Vice President of PETA, said in a statement.
“PETA is proud to have worked with compassionate legislators to push these lifesaving laws forward and looks to other states to follow California’s progressive lead.”
The law will go into effect on Jan 1, 2023, to make it illegal to manufacture, sell, offer for sale, display for sale, trade, give donate or otherwise distribute a new fur product in the state.
Under the new rules, clothing, handbags, shoes, slippers, hats, or key chains that contain fur would all be banned from such sales
Ban violations could result in civil or criminal penalties, including up to six months in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.