Conference to Focus on Scientific Equine Facts
HOUSTON, (Horseback) – The acknowledged leaders of the animal welfare movement will gather Monday for the first time in a hotel in the Washington suburb or Alexandria, Virginia to confront some of the thorniest issues to ever face horses – and some of the deadliest.
Organized by the Chicago based Equine Welfare Alliance and the Animal Law Coalition, the meeting was spearheaded by Dr. Ann Marini, principal author of a landmark scientific paper linking the common horse anti inflammatory drug phenalbutazone and death in humans eating horsemeat. The moderators are author R.T. Fitch and EWA Vice President Vicki Tobin.
Keynote speaker for the meeting is longtime equine welfare advocate John Holland of Virginia. Other nationally known speakers the first day are Jo Anne Normile, founder of the famous race horse rescue organization CANTER, Barbaro author Alex Brown, Equine Director Keith Dane of the U.S. Humane Society, and Marini. The meeting will then continue with a screening of the new award winning Katia Louise film, Saving America’s Horses, a Nation Betrayed. The meeting will end with a strategy session targeting anti-horse slaughter legislation currently in Congress,, and pro slaughter efforts by a small Wyoming based group of activists.
The Tuesday session kicks off with an address by Virginia Rep. Jim Moran (D). He will be followed by law University of Maryland law professor Valerie Stanley, and Katie Fite, a wild horse and public land use expert. Nancy Perry, vice president of government relations of the ASPCA has been a longtime leader in the effort to end horse slaughter.
Montana State Sen. Dave Wanzenreid fought an effort to bring a slaughterhouse to his state. He will be followed by Karen McCalpin, an east coast wild horse expert. The afternoon session kicks off with an address by Rep. Ed Whitfield (R) Kentucky, a longtime leader of anti-slaughter efforts in Congress. He is followed by activist Susan Wagner of Equine Advocates. Attorney Sonja Meadows, founder of the animal cruelty investigative unit Animals Angels will explore “The Link between Horse Slaughter and Cruelty.” Later Dr. Elliott Katz, DVM is president emeritus of In Defense of Animals and he will be followed on the dais by Paula Bacon, former Mayor of Kaufman, Texas where one of the two Texas slaughterhouses were located before a Texas law forced their closure.
Suzanne Roy of the American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign will speak on the continued efforts on the part of the federal Bureau of Land Management efforts to decimate western herds.
Tuesday’s session will end with a detailed analysis and refutation of a controversial GAO report on horse slaughter.
Holland’s remarks will almost certainly prompt news stories because he is likely to allege the document was unfairly influenced by pro-slaughter interests in Congress.
For the first time a highly official with the federal Bureau of Land Management will meet with animal welfare advocates in what is being billed as a breakthrough. Joan Guilfoyle, newly appointed chief of the bureau’s Wild Horse and Burro Division will introduce herself to advocates for the first time.
Famed documentary filmmaker Ginger Kathrens, an Emmy Award winner for her documentaries of an iconic wild horse named Cloud will address the group on “The Movement to Preserve Wild Horses and Burros on Public Lands.”
Wildlife Ecologist Craig Downer has spent a lifetime studying wild horses and the crisis they are facing under federal stewardship. He will be followed by Karen Sussman, an international expert on wild horses and burros.
Dr. Dan Rubenstein of Princeton will speak on population control, adoption, and immunocontraception of wild horses.
Billionaire Madeleine Pickens founder of Saving American Mustangs, has become the face of the American wild horse preservation movement. Her address is titled “Solutions to the Wild Horse Issue.”
The meeting will see a screening of the James Anaquad Kleinert film, Wild Horses and Renegades.
Dr. Caroline Betts of USC will again dissect the GAO report, on the unintended consequences of the cessation of domestic slaughter.
Captivity expert Dr. Bruce Nock of the Washington University School of Medicine speaks on stress to animals held against their will.
Montana zoo expert speaks on fertility control. Stephanie Boyles of the U.S Humane Society will address the HSUS vision for wild horse management in the U.S.
Karen Laney of the National Academy of Sciences will review science and the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro management program.
- GAO Follows Horse Slaughter Lobby Down the Rabbit Hole (rtfitch.wordpress.com)
- International Equine Conference Announces Strategy Sessions (rtfitch.wordpress.com)
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- Critical Week In Stopping the Flow of Cross Border Horse Slaughter (rtfitch.wordpress.com)
- Rally to Save Our Wild Horses & Burros (ppjg.wordpress.com)
- For Horse Lovers Everywhere: The Truth About Horse Slaughter (rtfitch.wordpress.com)
- Senator Baucus Dons his Horse Slaughter Suicide Vest (rtfitch.wordpress.com)
- WHFF VP Rebuffs Time’s Disparaging Wild Horse Piece (rtfitch.wordpress.com)