Bears, Circuses and ‘Outside Dogs’ on the 2022 Legislative Agenda
CVA has its priorities in order and its “advocacy voice” ready for the 2022 General Assembly session beginning in February. During the four-month “short” session, bills are restricted to only those introduced by a committee, which limits the number of bills debated. CVA is pleased to report that its priority issues are supported by the bi-partisan Legislative Animal Advocacy Caucus.
For 2022, CVA will champion the following initiatives.
Ban the use of exotic and wild animals in circuses and traveling entertainment shows: Exotic and wild animals in traveling circuses endure long periods shut in small spaces, physical and social deprivation, and brutal, violent methods of control. This bill will stop the use of these animals in circuses and traveling entertainment shows. There are more than 100 local circus animal prohibitions in 33 states including Bridgeport and Stamford in CT. Statewide bans have been enacted in New Jersey, New York, Hawaii, Illinois, Colorado, and California.
The pandemic disrupted movement on this bill for the past two years, so we are committed to getting it passed this session. In addition to the Legislative Animal Advocacy Caucus, all the major animal advocacy groups in CT have identified it as a priority. However, it will still be a hard push requiring the voices of many CVA supporters to get it over the finish line.
Stopping a bear hunt: We anticipate there again will be efforts to legalize bear hunting in Connecticut. CVA and other members of the CT Coalition to Protect Bears are committed to fighting this brutal response to CT’s small black bear population. The Coalition is promoting education and simple practices to peacefully co-exist with black bears. See CVA’s new bear page on our website: https://www.ctvotesforanimals.org/ct-colal
Outside dogs: CVA has been asked to join a working group of advocates and legislators to find solutions to dogs left outside, 24/7 regardless of weather, without any shelter and whether tethered or not. Representative Laura Develin (R-Fairfield) is spearheading this effort.