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Vancouver Chicken Slaughterhouse in Trouble for Endangering Animal Advocates

Animal Justice January 25, 2018

At Animal Justice, we use the law to help animals. Sometimes that means using animal protection laws, but often it means using other laws, unrelated to animals, to hold industry accountable and shine a spotlight on the abuse animals endure. If you can’t get the mafia for murder, get them for tax evasion, right?

In addition to being a nightmare for animals, slaughterhouse work is notoriously dangerous and abusive for workers. Occupational health and safety regulations are frequently engaged by workers suffering from injuries on the job.

The family of a worker from Hallmark Poultry slaughterhouse in Vancouver even sued the company for wrongful death after Bao Min Cheng died of a heart attack following a 13 hour shift. In court documents, the family stated that Hallmark hires non-English-speaking Chinese migrants and has them working up to 70 hours per week.

In recent years, Vancouver residents have increasingly attended vigils at Hallmark to observe and document the crates of animals in their last moments before slaughter. Witnesses are able to stand in a public alley between Hallmark buildings to get an up-close view of the killing operations, and interactions with slaughterhouse officials have been tense, with animal advocates repeatedly assaulted.

Last summer, Hallmark employees were seen driving forklifts carrying crates full of live chickens held high in the air. They even drove the forklifts straight over bystanders’ heads, which is illegal because of the obvious danger it creates. Workplace safety regulations require forklift operators to keep even non-live loads close to the ground out of safety concerns.

With the assistance of Animal Justice, courageous witnesses reported the violations to Work Safe BC, the agency responsible for workplace safety. According to inspection reports obtained under freedom of information legislation, the slaughterhouse has now been reprimanded for its dangerous conduct and ordered to retrain its employees on safe forklift handling requirements.

From the inspection report, Hallmark has now directed “operators that, should they be confronted by persons attempting to block or disrupt their travel, they will refrain from attempting to go forward and will move to a safe location, maintain distance from those person(s), and ensure the lift truck load is grounded.”

This is a small victory for animals and those who speak up for them. If you need assistance reporting violations of any legislation that governs animal-use facilities, please contact us.

 

 

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Animal Justice

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How to Lobby Your Political Reps to Support Plant-Strong Eating Recommendations

Animal Justice December 5, 2017

Earlier this year, Health Canada published much-anticipated draft revisions to Canada’s outdated food guide. The proposed healthy eating recommendations would encourage Canadians to eat “vegetables, fruit, whole grains and protein-rich foods, especially plant-based sources of protein” and to mostly eat unsaturated fat (found in plant-based foods) over unsaturated fat (found mostly in animal foods).

The proposed healthy eating recommendations would also eliminate the outdated food category and serving size / number format, instead setting out easy-to-follow, culturally-inclusive eating principles. Notably, dairy would no longer have its own food group—a sensible move considering up to 90 percent of some ethnicities cannot digest mammalian milk after infancy.

Unhealthy diets rich in animal foods cost the Canadian economy billions in health care costs and lost productivity. Researchers at McGill University have found that shifting Canadians towards a healthful, more plant-based diet is better for our economy.

And of course, the meat, dairy, and egg industries are a nightmare of cruelty for the 771 million land animals killed in Canada in 2016 alone.

The meat and dairy industries are concerned that the proposed healthy eating recommendations will hurt their bottom lines because Canadians will consume fewer animal foods. In fact, a recent investigation in the Globe and Mail showed that Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) has been lobbying Health Canada on industry’s behalf. Officials from AAFC warned that, “Messages that encourage a shift toward plant-based sources of protein would have negative implications for the meat and dairy industries.”

If you agree that Canadians deserve healthy eating recommendations that promote our health and longevity, not the short-term economic interests of a few politically powerful industries, take action! Here’s what to do:

Contact your local federal member of Parliament and ask to set up a meeting. Not sure who that is? Find out here.

Review this document, prepared by Animal Justice, outlining the health and economic case for Health Canada’s proposed eating recommendations.

Print two copies of the above document and bring along to your meeting—one to leave with your MP, and one for yourself to refer to.

Contact us afterwards to let us know how your MP responded!

 

Thank you for taking action for animals, our environment, and the health of all Canadians.

Animal Justice

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These Eight Cruelty-Free Canadian Coats Will Keep You Warm This Winter

Animal Justice November 24, 2017

Winter’s coming to Canada! Temperatures are plummeting, and many of us are scrambling to buy a new winter coat in preparation for the deep freeze that lies ahead. Tragically, some jacket and parka brands still use down fill for insulation, wool for fabric, and fur for decoration. For every animal-based parka purchased, an estimated 12 – 15 animals lose their lives.

Animals killed for fur and down parka

Animals killed and skinned for their fur suffer miserable deprivation on fur farms, and are ripped from their families in the wild by cruel traps and snares. Legal killing methods in Canada include gassing, electrocution, drowning, crush traps, strangulation, and head bashing.

Meanwhile, abuse runs rampant in the down industry, with recent undercover footage shot in Canada showing sensitive geese brutalized before having their throats slit open.

What’s a compassionate consumer to do? If you’re in the market for an animal-friendly winter coat, look no further than the Canadian companies in this handy guide.

Synthetic materials don’t contribute to animal cruelty, but animal-free alternatives also outperform down and fur—on warmth, sustainability, and of course, animal welfare.

(Note: All of these brands are fur-free, but some use faux fur trim. Be careful—not everyone can tell your trim is faux. The best option may be to avoid the look altogether.)

Doe Parka Wully Outerwear vegan cruelty-free

1. Wully Outerwear – Toronto

Wully Outerwear was founded by former CFL player James Yurichuk and his best friend, Anthony DeBartolo in 2012. Wully’s stylish jackets are made in Toronto and are entirely animal-free. Thanks to PrimaLoft insulation, a military-grade technology which outperforms down, it’s easy to feel invincible in the brisk Canadian weather. Bonus: The Animal Justice team has tried these parkas first-hand and believes they are a total game-changer!

 

 

 

Noize cruelty-free vegan parka

2. Noize – Montreal

Noize is a cruelty-free outerwear brand offering high-quality jackets. Their signature materials include 100% polyester, faux fur, and vegan leather.

Animal-friendly with a stylish focus. What’s not to love?

 

 

 

 

Artizia vegan cruelty-free parka

3. Aritzia – Vancouver

Known across Canada for bold and luxurious design, it’s pleasantly surprisingly to see Aritzia emphasize cruelty-free outerwear options. Check out Aritzia’s online store and use the ‘vegan’ search filter to easily navigate their animal-friendly options. Bonus: Aritzia also offers clothing made with vegan suede and leather!

 

 

 

 

4. Le Château – MontrealLe Chateau vegan cruelty-free puffer

Le Chateau is committed to fur-free fashion, and features sleek European styles. Their collection of puffer coats look especially cozy, and there are a variety of cruelty-free selections using synthetic materials like polyester and nylon.

 

 

 

 

5. Arc’teryx – Vancouverarcteryx cruety-free vegan jacket

This brand knows the outdoors. Arc’teryx was founded by climbers with a vision—to create apparel helping adventure-seekers explore nature in all weather conditions. Arc’teryz is completely fur-free, and has many down-free options as well.

 

 

 

 

6. Mountain Equipment Co-op – Vancouver

Athletically focused and durably made, MEC are experts in preparing people for the harsh weather. The brand is fur-free and has many down-free options. Some coats feature Hyperloft, which is a powerful, eco-synthetic insulation. Their styles with a practical purpose are a great option for combatting the cold.

 

 

Lole Vegan Cruelty free jacket 7. Lolë – Montreal

Specializing in women’s activewear with versatile and high-performance garments, Lolë features some trendy options to keep warm. All of the fur on their coats is faux, but those styles tend to use down. Steer in the direction of their clean cut looks which use Thermaglow as a synthetic insulator.

 

 

 

8. Frank & Oak – MontrealFrank & Oak Featherless parka vegan cruelty-free

Frank & Oak just released a cruelty-free and eco-friendly jacket line. These sturdy coats are made with 3M Thinsulate or Primaloft insulation. Both of these technologies outperform down—and that’s something to squawk about!

 

 

 

 

 

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Animal Justice

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