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After protests over the deletion of thousands of animal welfare records from the U.S. Department of Agriculture database reached the highest levels of government, the department has restored a small number of annual reports and inspection data. But the vast majority of the database is still missing. Keep up the pressure on the USDA to restore the ENTIRE database! Sign now!
Goal: 30,000 Progress: 11,551
Sponsored by: The Animal Rescue Site

Thousands of reports on facilities dealing with animals were taken down from the United States Department of Agriculture website on Feb. 3, 2017. The reports detailed inspections of operations regulated under the Animal Welfare Act or the Horse Protection Act, as well as the crimes and the legal enforcement actions taken against those who have violated the laws.

The removal of these documents from the public was met with consternation and protest from those who must operate under the rules. Advocates for animal rights, as well as those looking for or selling pets, have long relied on this information to research puppy mills and abusive breeders. In seven states, where there is no lower regulatory presence, these reports have been the sole source of such data.

"What the USDA has done is given cover to people who neglect or harm animals and get cited by USDA inspectors," John Goodwin, head of the Stop Puppy Mills Campaign at The Humane Society of the United States, told US News. "The public is no longer going to know which commercial dog breeders, horse trainers, which zoos, which research labs have horrible animal welfare track records."

Those responsible for enforcing animal welfare laws will have a harder time doing so without access to the data as well. Local regulations dealing with animals, or bans on breeders, may be impossible to enforce altogether.

The only information currently accessible on the USDA's APHIS — Animal Care website is a short message affirming the department's "commitment to being transparent, remaining responsive to our stakeholders' informational needs, and maintaining the privacy rights of individuals."

But what about the rights of animals to live free from abuse?

"The citizens of the United States deserve to see that information," Dan Ashe, head of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the former director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, told National Geographic. He maintains that USDA's actions are "not in the interest of credible, legitimate animal care facilities. What [the action] does is it erodes public confidence, because when people see something like that, they're inclined, rightfully, to think that the government is trying to shield something from their view."

The USDA claims that the records have been taken down as a matter of "maintaining the privacy rights of individuals," but it's clear the welfare of animals is at risk as result of that action.

Tell the head of the USDA to restore public access to all animal welfare information immediately!

Sign Here






To the Secretary of Agriculture,

The USDA's decision to block the public from its database of animal welfare reports must be reversed. The department cannot be transparent with these short-sighted actions, and the citizens of the United States demand you restore the information now.

Advocates for animal rights, as well as those looking for or selling pets, have long relied on this information to research puppy mills and abusive breeders. In seven states, where there is no lower regulatory presence, these reports have been the sole source of such data. The agents responsible for enforcing animal welfare laws will have a harder time doing so without access to the data, as well. Local regulations dealing with animals, or bans on breeders, may be impossible to enforce altogether.

There is no reason this information should be obfuscated as a result of private interests. It belongs in the public domain, as experts and members of nearly every level of government have asserted.

Secretary, you would do well to consider the legal action currently facing the USDA, as initiated by the Humane Society of the Unites States. The betrayal of the settlement made in 2009, when those documents were made public, will not go down without a tremendous fight.

I demand you restore public access to the USDA's animal welfare information immediately.

Sincerely,

Petition Signatures


Sep 18, 2017 Meghan Croyts
Sep 18, 2017 GEORGE A LUCAS this must stop. what has America become?
Sep 17, 2017 robert dowling
Sep 17, 2017 Geralyn & Michael Frishman
Sep 16, 2017 kathleen michael
Sep 15, 2017 Ladonna Courey
Sep 15, 2017 sherry butcher
Sep 15, 2017 Jeannette remak this needs to stop. I want to know WHAT IS GOING ON WITH ANIMALS IN THIS COUNTRY!!!
Sep 14, 2017 Lesley Thomas
Sep 14, 2017 Sharon Bellwood
Sep 14, 2017 Dawn Serbanic
Sep 14, 2017 Deborah Moore
Sep 14, 2017 Tanya Lenn
Sep 14, 2017 Dawn Barber
Sep 13, 2017 Gayle Flatau
Sep 13, 2017 Rosalyn Morrow
Sep 13, 2017 barbara gale
Sep 13, 2017 Sherry Frey-Brown
Sep 13, 2017 Paula Pucharella
Sep 13, 2017 Lisa Henry
Sep 13, 2017 John Berkland
Sep 13, 2017 Maxine Clark
Sep 13, 2017 Elizabeth Mitchell
Sep 13, 2017 Tina Pragel
Sep 13, 2017 jackie lewthwaite
Sep 13, 2017 Alysa Waring
Sep 13, 2017 Sabina Taneja
Sep 13, 2017 Camille Barron
Sep 13, 2017 Spasenic Lacramioara
Sep 12, 2017 karen Lentz
Sep 11, 2017 Ronald Stahl
Sep 11, 2017 Ilse DePriest
Sep 11, 2017 Arlene Ruksza-Lenz
Sep 11, 2017 cali cheshelski The USDA has blocked the reports from public view because it is the USDA that kills 100's of thousands of wildlife annually and they get away with it because the general public does not know !!!
Sep 11, 2017 Trixie Santos
Sep 10, 2017 Ellen Madarasz
Sep 10, 2017 Laurie pottish
Sep 10, 2017 Catherine D.
Sep 9, 2017 Gillian Lee
Sep 9, 2017 Stevie littrell
Sep 9, 2017 Deana Conklin
Sep 9, 2017 Jen vonSchlieder
Sep 9, 2017 (Name not displayed)
Sep 8, 2017 Viviane Escudie USDA SHOULD SUFFER THE SAME BRUTALITY THEY TRY TO HIDE
Sep 7, 2017 Setsuko Yamamoto
Sep 7, 2017 Sherylann Moran
Sep 6, 2017 Mara Mandell
Sep 6, 2017 Diana Martins
Sep 6, 2017 Shane Hyde
Sep 6, 2017 Lisa Randall

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