GAO Asked to Investigate Cruelty to Horses; Obama and Vilsack Asked to Push for Ban on Horse Slaughter
Ithaca, New York (Advertiser Talk) 25-Jan-2010 — The Animal Law Coalition and Animals Angels have asked the U.S. Government Accounting Office (GAO) to investigate gross violations of humane laws and regulations of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in connection with the commercial slaughter of horses.
The request for a GAO investigation comes in the wake of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for documents which were subsequently released by the USDA. Alarming cruelty and violations of regulations were documented in several hundred photos taken during 2005 at U.S. slaughterhouses by USDA investigators.
Though horse slaughter ended in the U.S. in 2007, American horses are still sold for slaughter in Mexico and Canada. Proponents of horse slaughter have insisted on the re-opening of horse slaughter plants, saying U.S. laws protect horses from cruelty unlike Mexico and Canada.
However, documents and photos released by the USDA refute such claims. The FOIA shows horses bound for slaughter in the U.S. endured shockingly cruel treatment. Photographs documented horses with legs ripped off, eyeballs hanging on their cheeks and other severe injuries.