We Can Protect Horses from Slaughter by Passing the SAFE Act!
Between 2001 and 2019, 1.5 million horses, both wild and domestic, were shipped to slaughterhouses in Mexico and Canada. The traumatic journeys in tightly packed trailers where some horses die before arriving at their horrifying destination are despicable. We must put a stop to these terrifying deaths in foreign slaughterhouses, and we’ll soon have an opportunity to accomplish this goal with the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act.
Horse slaughter in the U.S. was not outlawed in 2006, but the passage of a law that year defunding horse meat inspections effectively shut it down. Since then, horse slaughter proponents have tried to get funding put back into federal appropriations. However, that effort was rebuffed when then-Vice President Biden gave crucial support for the defunding language in the 2013 omnibus (budget spending) bill.
With no horse slaughterhouses in the U.S., there is no protection for horses being shipped across our borders to Mexico and Canada for slaughter. There have been bills introduced in Congress for many years, beginning in September of 2006 when the House of Representatives passed the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act. The law would have banned the sale and transport of American horses for human consumption. Unfortunately, that bill died in the Senate and never became law.
Since then, legislative sessions have introduced some version of this bill to meet the same fate, never becoming law. We must make sure this bill, now called the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act, finally becomes law in the new Congress. This bill will ban horse slaughter in the U.S., and ensure that horses are not shipped across the border for that purpose.
The SAFE Act will be reintroduced in the new 117th session of the U.S. Congress in 2021, where it will have the best chance for passage in many years. When it is assigned a bill number, we will let you know. Then we can alert our legislators to become co-sponsors of this critical bill.