Target: Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada
Goal: Buy out the commercial sealing industry in efforts to end the horrific slaughter of baby seals.
Every year, hundreds of thousands of baby harp seals are killed in Canada for their fur. Ninety-eight percent of these seals are younger than three months old, and they are often bludgeoned to death and then skinned. Commercial fishermen take part in sealing between fishing seasons to subsidize their incomes. However, on average, less than five percent of a sealer’s income comes from the seal hunt. In addition, the demand for seal pelts has drastically decreased in recent years. Humane Society International is demanding that the Canadian government implement a federal buyout of the commercial sealing industry. This one-time buyout would compensate fishermen and vessel owners for their sealing licenses and any lost income, and invest money in more sustainable economic alternatives. Urge the Prime Minister Stephen Harper to end seal slaughter once and for all by implementing this federal buyout.
Many countries around the world have banned the seal products trade in efforts to pressure Canada into ending seal slaughter. These countries include those in the European Union, Russia, the United States, and Taiwan. In addition, animal welfare groups around the world have launched campaigns to boycott Canadian seafood products to force the country’s seafood industry to end commercial sealing. However, despite these efforts, the horrific and outdated act of sealing is still happening. Paired with the impacts of climate change, sealing poses a serious ecological threat to the survival of harp seal populations. Seals should not be cruelly bludgeoned to death for the purpose of fashion.
A recent poll shows that 50 percent of Canadian sealers would support a federal buyout, as they are aware of the decline in the sealing industry value. The federal buyout would subsidize fishermen for their lost income from seal hunting and put the taxpayer money, originally used to fund sealing, into developing humane economic alternatives. Economists have noted that a federal buyout would cost Canada less than the costs needed to continue the commercial sealing industry. Sign the petition below to urge the Canadian government to end this needless slaughter today.
Dear Prime Minister Harper,
I am saddened to see that seal hunting is still occurring in Canada. This barbaric industry is inhumane, unsustainable, and highly outdated. As you may know, commercial fishermen take part in sealing in between fishing seasons to subsidize their incomes. However, on average, less than five percent of a sealer’s income is from sealing. This five percent can be compensated in the form of a federal buyout. The Canadian government can pay fishermen and vessel owners for their sealing licenses and any lost income. The taxpayer money that is used for sealing can be invested into a more sustainable economic alternative.
Economists have noted that a federal buyout of the commercial sealing industry would cost the country less than the costs needed to sustain the industry. In addition, many countries have already banned or are in the process of banning the trade in seal products. More and more people are also boycotting Canada’s seafood industry. Overall public opinion of sealing is negative, as many people believe that baby seals should not be clubbed to death for the sake of fashion. I would like to urge you to end the sealing industry once and for all by implementing a federal buy out.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Matthieu Godbout via Wikimedia Commons