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The Gap Year Blog

Los Angeles to become the biggest city in the US to ban fur sales

15 Mar 2019 15:45 PM

Photo Credit: Flickr | Monik Markus

Edited with Permission by Frontier


Los Angeles will become the biggest city in the United States to ban the sales and manufacture of new animal fur. The city council voted to pass the law back in February and the ban is set to begin in 2021.

The ban makes it illegal to sell, trade or manufacture fur products within L.A city limits. It would include some exemptions, such as, selling used furs at second-hand stores and fur made from animals captured by a trapping licence holder.

Because the February vote was not unanimous, there is still a slight chance the ordinance will not become a law. It will now return to back to the council for a second vote before it will be sent to the mayor’s office for a signature. Out of the 15-member council, only one representative, Greig Smith, opposed the ban after expressing concerns over the economic consequences of shutting down “legitimate businesses”. 

The law has met opposition from fur businesses that claim the ban deprives consumers of the freedom to choose. Fur industry groups in L.A tried to hold back the ban by offering to commit to a certification program that would guarantee humane treatment of animals, but the attempt was unsuccessful.

Animal right activists received the news with rejoice. They hope that the decision by the city council will set an example for other cities, and maybe for the whole state, on how to compact animal cruelty. Before the vote, undercover videos from fur factories were circulated and played by the activists, some even at the city hall, to expose gruesome conditions of fur farming. The videos were disputed as inaccurate by the fur industry.

Los Angeles now follows the lead of West Hollywood and San Francisco which passed similar laws banning fur sales few years ago. The ban in San Francisco began at the start of this year and retailers will have until 2020 to sell their existing furs. Until the fur ban comes into effect in L.A, San Francisco will remain as the largest city that has banned fur businesses. 

By Tiia Kärkkäinen - Online Journalism Intern

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