State Senator Henry Stern is working with a coalition of national and statewide animal activists to take action to prevent the owning of elephant trophies in California.
Recently, federal policy changed last week when the US Fish and Wildlife Service announced they will now be considering all permits on a “case-by-case” basis. The policy change has prompted public outcry as it will incentivize trophy hunters and practices that will continue to diminish the already declining elephant population.
“California has the power to end trophy hunting of endangered species here, and through our market power, across the world. I intend to use that power this year to stop Trump’s deeply disappointing about face,” remarked Senator Stern. “Unlike Washington D.C., in California, we recognize endangered animals as treasures to be protected, not trophies to be mounted.”
Stern and the coalition are considering a range of legislative options, including a statewide ban on possessing actual trophies or parts of trophies, with the end goal to prevent the import of endangered species.
“It is appalling that overturning a ban vital in protecting declining elephant populations in Africa is even being considered on a “case by case basis,” stated Judie Mancuso, founder and president of Social Compassion in Legislation, or SCIL, the animal advocacy group sponsoring the bill. “In fact, this appears like a disingenuous way to overturn the ban completely.”
“African elephants have been under siege for decades. Targeted by ivory poachers and legal hunters, elephant numbers have dropped perilously low in most parts of the continent.” said Katie Cleary, founder of Peace4Animals, the group which just launched a billboard campaign across the United States with that very slogan. “According to the Great Elephant Census, the elephant population dropped by 30% from 2007 to 2014, a loss of 144,000 elephants. Across Zimbabwe they fell by 6% with substantial declines recorded along the Zambezi River in Zambia. It’s time to take the ‘con’ out of conservation.”
The above information was obtained by The Signal via a news release provided by the office of State Senator Henry Stern.