The Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) has successfully developed its first federal legislation to end the capture and breeding of whales for public display.
The Nonhuman Rights Project is the only organization in the United States that is dedicated solely to securing legal rights for nonhuman animals. The SWIMS Act was introduced by Representatives Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Jared Huffman (D-Calif.), and Suzan DelBene (D-Wash.), as well as Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.).
“As part of our commitment to advocating in the halls of power for the freedom of autonomous nonhuman beings like whales, we’re honored to have been able to work with a longtime, passionate animal advocate like Representative Schiff in the lead-up to this bill’s introduction,” said Courtney Fern, the NhRP’s Director of Government Relations and Campaigns. “We look forward to working with Representative Schiff’s office, the SWIMS Act cosponsors, and the strong coalition of endorsing organizations to ensure its passage.”
The SWIMS Act would amend the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 and add the ban on taking, importing, or exporting orcas, beluga whales, pilot whales, and false killer whales for public display.
This is unless the animal is being transported to a sanctuary or released into the wild. The bill will also amend the Animal Welfare Act and prohibit the breeding of these species for future public display.
The bill references scientific evidence of the cognitive, emotional, and social complexity of whales. It also speaks on the importance of whales having autonomy as individuals.
This article by Hailey Kanowski was first published by OneGreenPlanet on 1 August 2022. Lead Image Source : Thanaphong Araveeporn/Shutterstock.
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