Wild Horses at Risk of Slaughter as BLM’s Problems Worsen
Suzanne Roy’s, Campaign Director for American Wild Horse Preservation, article in the Huffington Post spells out clearly why reform is needed in the BLM. The American Wild Horse Preservation’s newest campaign is to make our government understand this message as well. Please read the article in full and click on the link to speak your voice for reform. Yes, there have been other campaigns. And there will be more in the future. We must keep the pressure up to succeed in keeping Wild Horses and Burros alive and free. ~ HfH
From: The Huffington Post
By: Suzanne Roy
Two years ago we learned about Tom Davis, the man the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), sold 1,700 wild horses to between 2009-2012. Davis, known to traffic horses to Mexico for slaughter, asked a reporter at the time, “What is wrong with taking all those BLM horses they got all fat and shiny and setting up a kill plant?”
None of the more than 1,700 wild horses the BLM transferred to Davis have been seen since. All likely ended up being killed for meat at slaughterhouses in Mexico.
The BLM told us this could never happen, but it did. They told us they’d investigate how this happened, but they didn’t. They said it would never happen again; do you trust them? You shouldn’t.
In fact, the BLM could be on the verge of implementing an even larger backdoor slaughter program than what we saw with Davis. Consider the evidence:
The 2012 report that exposed Davis also revealed that the severely mismanaged BLM wild horse and burro program was under strain. “The agency has more wild horses than it knows what to do with,” it said, “and Davis has become a relief valve for a federal program plagued by conflict and cost overruns.”
The program has now reached a crisis point in 2014. Various sources inside the agency confirm that there is no more room to hold wild horses and the head of the BLM’s program stated in internal memo that it is on the brink of “financial insolvency.”
In the same memo we learned of plans to launch an “aggressive” sales program with “reduced” checks on where the horses end up. In other words, solve the agency’s problems using the same “relief valve” that resulted in over 1,700 wild horses disappearing via Davis’ hands.
Pro-slaughter members of the agency’s advisory board go a step further than “reduced” checks, however, and call for “unconditional sales,” which is code word for slaughter.
And pro-slaughter ranchers are piling on, filing a lawsuit that seeks to compel the BLM to sell horses without restriction and “destroy” horses it can’t sell.
How did we get here? It’s not as if 50,000 wild horses walked up and let themselves into BLM holding facilities. The crisis the BLM has created by removing thousands more wild horses than could be adopted has been a long time in the making and everyone — including the agency — knew it would reach a breaking point. Yet the roundups continued.
The agency then paid the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) more than $1 million to do a scientific review of the program. The results? NAS found that “continuation of ‘business as usual’ practices will be expensive and unproductive for BLM and the public it serves.”
Habitat for Horses is always on the lookout for a few great people, both in the office and on our ranches. The work is unique, the animals are special and we want folks who both know and understand the special connection our animals need.
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