Finally. Some encouraging news for New York City’s carriage horses.
New York City took another step towards the protection of animals across the city on Monday, with Mayor Bill de Blasio signing off on a new law that included carriage horses.
The legislation limits when horse carriages can operate in hot weather — six years after pledging to rid the city of the industry entirely.
Central Park’s carriage horses are already banned from working when temperatures hit 90 degrees or more in the summer and when it’s 18 degrees or below in the winter.
But the legislation signed by de Blasio would also prohibit carriage horses from working when temperatures hit 80 degrees and the “equine heat index” — the sum of the temperature and the relative humidity at any point — is at least 150. This will potentially increase the number of weather related suspensions from 24 to 44 which threatens the livelihood of the carriage horse business in New York.
A group called NYCLASS has pushed lawmakers to end the carriage industry for years, although critics of the group note its co-founder Steve Nislick, a real estate developer, has also in the past lobbied the mayor for an affordable housing plan in the neighborhood around Manhattan’s largest carriage stable.
After de Blasio’s 2013 campaign got a financial boost from NYCLASS, he promised to completely ban Central Park horse carriages “on day one.” The effort failed spectacularly, though the city limited pickups to inside the park in 2018 at the urging of NYCLASS.
“The mayor signing this bill indicates that he is part of NYCLASS’s systematic effort to destroy the carriage horses,” carriage driver Christina Hansen said, saying the bill was “unscientific.”
(ANSA.IT) ROME, ITALY — Rome’s famed ‘botticelle’ horse-drawn tourist carriages are to move from the streets of the Italian capital to its villas’ parks under a measure passed by the environmental committee on Tuesday, 25 September.
The move is set to be put to final approval by the mobility committee “within the first few days of October”, sources said.
“Among the key aims of the measure is to avoid all suffering to the horses, taking the botticelle activities to more suitable locations like parks and historic villas,” said the head of the Rome environmental committee, Daniele Diaco of the ruling anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S).
It will also be possible for drivers to switch jobs and apply for taxi licenses, he said.
Since no new botticelle licenses will be issued, the carriages may disappear if all 32 drivers apply to become taxi drivers.
Animal rights groups have long complained that the horses are subject to too much stress and strain on Rome’s hot cobbled streets.
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Too much stress and strain? Hot cobbled streets? Yes, we agree. However, that’s only the beginning of what these horses suffer. Pictures say a thousand words. Look familiar?
Where do the horses live? The same type of miserable conditions, totally unnatural for a horse, as any other carriage horse in any other city. This is a worldwide system of abuse.
We can’t use this image linked here without paying for it, but it shows what the typical stall looks like.
Ban Horse Drawn Carriages
Even with moving Rome’s carriage horses to park like settings, the horses will still be working in the same weather conditions, still living in the same crumbling buildings totally in situations totally unnatural to a horse, pulling heavy loads of tourists, and can still be spooked.
“Since no new botticelle licenses will be issued, the carriages may disappear if all 32 drivers apply to become taxi drivers.”
Here is the intended replacement for the horses.
This is the best we can hope for. However, what will happen to the horses? Turned into sausages no doubt, an Italian gastromic favourite.
Multiple media outlets have covered how Chicago’s horse carriage companies are violating both Chicago’s Ordinance and the Illinois Humane Care for Animals Act by overworking carriage horses, among other mistreatment. Will the City of Chicago ban horse drawn carriages? They have a great opportunity before them to do just that. Let’s see.
CHICAGO (CBS) — Chicago’s downtown horse carriage rides may be forced to ride into the sunset.
Three aldermen are backing a move to eliminate the carriage rides before the winter holidays, with strong support from animal rights activists.
Danny Shugrue, the manager of Antique Coach and Carriages, says Chicago will not be the same without its iconic horse drawn carriages. “How many things are we going to drive out of the city where it’s just a generic thing? With no character left?” Shugrue questioned.
Ald. Ray Lopez (15th Ward) contends the horse carriages add cruelty, not character.
“They’ve not been able to regulate themselves and the city doesn’t have the resources to regulate them,” Ald. Ray Lopez stated. He is joining Ald. Brendan Reilly and Brian Hopkins, backing an ordinance that would bar carriage operators from renewing their licenses in November, essentially driving them out of business.
Animal activist Jodie Weiderker of Chicago Alliance for Animals points out, and the city confirmed, carriage operators received 334 citations and more than $20,000 in fines last year.
“We have witnessed and documented horses being overworked, sometimes as long as 12 plus hours, working horses when it’s been 90 degrees or hotter and also not providing water, many times,” Weiderker said.
The fate of Chicago’s horse-drawn carriages will remain uncertain for a little while longer, after a City Council committee declined Wednesday to vote on an ordinance that would put them out of business.
Emma Mitts, chairwoman of the Committee on License and Consumer Protection, said she believes that given more time, a compromise can be worked out between foes of horse-drawn carriages in Chicago and the horse and carriage owners. The committee was considering a proposed ordinance that would bar horse-drawn carriage owners from renewing their licenses, putting them out of business in the city. Read more »
There is no compromise for cruelty. You have failed Ms Mitts. And this is not the first time the Chicago City Council has failed the horses on this issue.
The more things change the more they stay the same. Listen to this argument Committee chairwoman Mitts made:
“The decision by the committee not to vote followed three hours of often-emotional testimony from both sides. After testimony ended, Mitts expressed anger that she was being pressured to make a quick decision about the carriages when people are dying from violence in other parts of the city.” See Tribune story »
Create a Storm
Let’s show love for Chicago’s carriage horses and support the work Chicago Alliance for Animals is doing on their behalf.
Get out there on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook and protest the continuance of horse drawn carriages in Chicago. You don’t have to be from the area. The carriage horse trade is tourist driven and the City of Chicago will not like getting bad publicity. Let’s put the heat on. Will you help?
Sample language. Use the first phrase always. The select from the rest. Hashtags and handles to follow. Peak hours for hashtagging #Chicago is 1:00pm to 3:00pm EST.
Ban horse drawn carriages Chicago. It’s dangerous and inhumane. Cruelty knows no regulation. Just ban it!
(CARRIAGE HORSES) The carriage horse industry is a cruel and insidious business resulting in long term abuse, injury and even death to the horses used.
Carriage horse workers routinely claim they need no rules because they can self rule, that their horses are treated right, or that agreed on protective measures are already in place and all is well.
What’s ironic about these measures put into place by well meaning people, is that they are what a decent human being responsible for any animal would know that they should and should not do to provide proper care.
By all reports health and safety guidelines for carriage horses have not worked that we know of. Not even close, because they are not met nor are they enforced. They are largely ignored. So carriage horse workers continue to house and work horses as they have always done, and the terrible life that carriage horses daily suffer goes on as before.
The One Green Planet article is entitled, “WTH?! Visibly Uncomfortable Horse Forced to Carry Tourists During NYC Heat Advisory Shows Why Carriages Have to Go! (VIDEO)”. Yet further on in the article a ban is not called for, but more . . . you guessed it — reforms. Proposed by none other than NYCLASS.
Reforms are exactly what is NOT required.
The carriage horse trade in Manhattan and in cities around the country do what they damn well please in the face of whatever reforms and protective measures are in place.
Blessedly a few of the worst stables housing carriage horses have shut down in Manhattan, but only because they were forced to due to encroaching redevelopment. This was predicted.
There is only one solution to end the day-to-day misery and abuse of carriage horses. We must ban the carriage horse trade in American cities. End of story.
While we are grateful that a few carriage horse businesses are dwindling and dying out because of groups like ours and concerned citizens like you who are raising our voices, we need to do more.
Please use social media to call for the ban of the the carriage horse trade in your area. Do it with us or someone like us, but please do it!
We are putting together a social media campaign. If you would like to help, please share your ideas in comments or email us with samples of attention grabbing slogans and statements and who you think should be targeted and where. If you have or can take pictures of carriage horses working in the heat in your area or while on vacation, please share them.