California bans the sale of all fur products

Photo: Marjan Blan via Unsplash
Photo: Marjan Blan via Unsplash

No more mink, chinchilla, fox, or rabbit clothing in California. In 2023 it will be illegal to manufacture or shop for fur items in the state. Governor Gavin Newsom signed bill AB-44 on Saturday, banning fur completely. California is the first state in the United States to take this step.

“California is a leader when it comes to animal welfare and today that leadership includes banning the sale of fur,” Newsom said in a statement.

And that’s not the only step he’s taking against animal cruelty. He’s also banning the use of wild animals in circuses: “We are making a statement to the world that beautiful wild animals like bears and tigers have no place on trapeze wires or jumping through flames. The videos showing the cruel way these animals – often stripped from their mothers as babies – are trained to do dangerous tricks. It’s deeply disturbing.”

By banning most animals from circus performances, California joins New Jersey and Hawaii in ending the use animals for entertainment. The law includes penalties of up to $25,000 per day for each violation.

Cruel practices behind fur
Fur clothing is mostly made from the skin of mink, chinchillas, foxes, and rabbits. Undercover videos from animal welfare organizations shows the cruelty behind making fur clothing. The animals are forced to live in filthy small wire cages without adequate supplies. They often hurt themselves or other animals in their cage. And that’s not even mentioning the way they are killed and skinned.

Footage: Humane Society International

Fine for violations
Each fur item sold or manufactured from 2023 will be treated as a separate violation. People breaking the law will be fined between $500 or in repeat cases, $1,000.

More fur bans
Animal welfare organizations are happy with this step. Humane Society International hopes it will inspire fur bans around the world. Their executive director Claire Bass in England: “Our #FurFreeBritain campaign is calling on the British government to follow in California’s footsteps, and make the UK the first country in the world to ban the sale of animal fur.”

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