Target: Bob Paulson, Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police
Goal: Praise new fur alternative that will save the lives of thousands of animals annually
This winter, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) will trade its traditional winter hats made from muskrat fur for woolen tuques. According to RCMP spokesperson David Falls, the federal police force had help from the Association for the Protection of Fur-Bearing Animals (APFA) in order to create a plan to phase out the fur hats. While the new standard-issue hats will be made of merino fleece, some of the old fur hats will be reserved for officers working in extremely cold weather conditions.
According to statistics released by the APFA, three to four muskrats are killed to make one of the traditional winter uniform hats, with between 9,000 to 12,000 animals trapped and killed annually. The muskrats are trapped with leg-hold traps, which can leave animals stuck for extended periods of time before being found, leaving them to die of dehydration, starvation, predation, and even drowning. In the past, muskrats have been known to resort to self-harm, chewing off their own limbs in order to escape these painful traps.
While significant progress has been made in testing and choosing a suitable alternative, fur is still used in other areas of the RCMP uniform, including coyote fur in the linings of jackets. Modern-day synthetics provide cost-efficient alternatives to fur that are also effective to keep the cold out. For example, faux furs made of hemp provide insulation against temperatures as low as -35 degrees Celsius, only five degrees less than muskrat fur. Your signature will recognize the RCMP’s progress in eliminating fur, which will save the lives of thousands of muskrats annually, and urge it to continue working toward completely fur-free uniforms.
Dear Commissioner Bob Paulson,
The RCMP recently announced that it will be issuing new standard winter hats, made without the traditional muskrat fur, to officers this season. The new hats, made of merino wool, will eliminate the need to trap and slaughter 9,000 to 12,000 muskrats annually.
While this is significant progress toward a more cruelty-free uniform, fur is still used to make other uniform garments, including jacket linings. Today’s market offers several effective and cost-efficient alternatives to fur, including hemp and synthetics. We, the undersigned, commend your efforts to reduce fur usage in uniforms, and ask that continued work is done to eliminate furs from the RCMP uniform entirely.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Jumpingmaniac via Creative Commons