What You Can Do to Help Stop the Mass Killing of Baby Seals!
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Status: Open/ Occurs in Canada every spring
Originally Posted: March 20, 2008

What You Can Do to Help Stop the Mass Killing of Baby Seals!

March 20, 2008:
Canada Announces Plans to Kill 275,000 Harp Seal Pups this Spring

Once again, in defiance of international opposition and all standards of human decency, the Canadian government has sanctioned the mass killing of helpless baby harp seals. In the weeks ahead, hundreds of thousands of these animals will be clubbed, impaled with sharp hooks and even skinned alive all so that someone can put on a coat, a collar or cuffs made with real baby-seal fur.

Hundreds of thousands of harp seals will be killed in a matter of weeks. Most of them will be less than 3 months old, and many will still be in their first weeks of life. The animals are so young and innocent that they will lie on the ice as their attackers approach. Even if they know that they should flee, their motor skills aren't yet developed enough to do so. They have no chance of escaping to the safety of the water.

The carnage begins as the seals have their heads bashed in with clubs. They will be dragged across the ice with boat hooks while still conscious. Then these sensitive, intelligent animals will be skinned, sometimes while they are still alive. The sealers will take their fur but leave the seals' bodies on the ice to rot.

Last year, the sealers managed to kill over 215,000 seal pups after at least a quarter million drowned because of the historically poor formation of sea ice. Weather and these drownings prevented them from killing the rest of the 270,000 seal quota.

Thus far in 2008, the ice appears to be in a better condition than it was at this time last year. We can only wait to see how the seal pups will do prior to the slaughter.

Someday soon, Canada will look back on its seal hunt with shame. But until that day comes, it is up to caring people like you and me to come to the defense of these gentle animals.

What You Can Do:  

1.  Write to Canada's key government officials (Contacts and sample letter provided below.)

2.  Contact the media

3.  Boycott Canadian Seafood

4.  Share this information with as many people as possible

5.  Learn more

1.  Contact Canada's key government officials
(Contacts submitted by KinshipCircle.org.)

Please send letters by mail, fax, email, or call any or ALL of the contacts listed below.  It doesn't matter which country you reside, the more of a world-wide outcry, the better.  However, Canadian residents can also reach direct MP's to voice concerns (Click here to find your local Member of Parliament - MP).

CANADIAN POLITICIANS

The Honourable Loyola Hearn, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans
HOUSE OF COMMONS
Parliament Buildings, Wellington Street
Ottawa, Ontario; Canada, K1A 0A6
ph: 613-992-0927; fax: 613-995-7858
email: Hearn.L@parl.gc.ca, mp@loyolahearn.nf.net, min@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
SOURCE: www.loyolahearnmp.ca/EN/contact_loyola/

The Honourable David Emerson, Minister of International Trade
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0A6
ph: 613-943-0267; fax: 613-943-0219; email: Emerson.D@parl.gc.ca
SOURCE: webinfo.parl.gc.ca/ MembersOfParliament/ProfileMP.aspx?Key=78539&Language=E

The Right Honourable Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada
Office of the Prime Minister, 80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, K1A 0A2
ph: 613-992-421; fax: 613-941-6900; email: pm@pm.gc.ca, Harper.S@parl.gc.ca
SOURCE: www.pm.gc.ca/eng/contact.asp?pageId=30
webinfo.parl.gc.ca/ MembersOfParliament/ProfileMP.aspx?Key=78553&Language=E

The Honourable Gerald Keddy
Parliament Member for the South Shore of Nova Scotia
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0A6
ph: 613-996-0877; fax: 613-996-0878; email: Keddy.G@parl.gc.ca
SOURCE: webinfo.parl.gc.ca/ MembersOfParliament/ProfileMP.aspx?Key=78823&Language=E

CONTACT INFO FOR EVERY MEMBER OF CANADIAN PARLIAMENT:
www.parl.gc.ca/ common/SenatorsMembers_house.asp?Language=E&Parl=38&Ses=1&Sect=hoccur

CANADIAN EMBASSIES AND CONSULUTES

FIND CONTACT INFO FOR EMABSSY/CONSULATE IN YOUR COUNTRY:
www.dfait-maeci.gc.ca/world/embassies/cra-en.asp

The Embassy of Canada in the United States
The Honourable Michael Wilson, Office of the Ambassador
501 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20001
ph: 202-682-1740; fax: 202-682-7726; email: canada@canadianembassy.org
 
CANADIAN TOURISM
 
Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC)
Suite 1400, Four Bentall Centre
1055 Dunsmuir St./Box 49230
Vancouver, BC V7X 1L2, Canada
ph: 604-638-8300
website: www.corporate.canada.travel/en/ca/

CTC's U.S. Leisure Marketing Department
Siobhan Chretien, Executive Director, U.S. Leisure Marketing
604-638-8392; chretien.siobhan@ctc-cct.ca

Ernst Flach, Manager, U.S. Leisure Marketing
604-638-8375; flach.ernst@ctc-cct.ca

Yolaine Dupont, Marketing Specialist, U.S. Leisure Marketing
604-638-8379; dupont.yolaine@ctc-cct.ca

Paul Nursey, Marketing Specialist, U.S. Leisure Marketing
604-638-8378; nursey.paul@ctc-cct.ca

Katherine Mulligan, Project & Administration Officer, U.S. Leisure Marketing
604-638-8377; mulligan.katherine@ctc-cct.ca

CTC's U.S. Leisure Sales Department
iris.susan@ctc-cct.ca, campbell.monica@ctc- cct.ca, dolan.heather@ctc-cct.ca, brown.saunders@ctc-cct.ca, karins.tom@ctc-cct.ca

ALL EMAILS IN THIS ALERT:
Hearn.L@parl.gc.ca, mp@loyolahearn.nf.net, min@dfo-mpo.gc.ca, Emerson.D@parl.gc.ca, pm@pm.gc.ca, Harper.S@parl.gc.ca, Keddy.G@parl.gc.ca, canada@canadianembassy.org, chretien.siobhan@ctc-cct.carflach.ernst@ctc-cct.ca, dupont.yolaine@ctc-cct.ca, nursey.paul@ctc-cct.ca, mulligan.katherine@ctc-cct.ca, iris.susan@ctc-cct.ca, campbell.monica@ctc-cct.ca, dolan.heather@ctc-cct.ca, brown.saunders@ctc-cct.ca, karins.tom@ctc-cct.ca

*Kinship Circle cannot guarantee validity of email addresses. During campaigns, recipients may change or disable their email addresses. Emails obtained from government websites may be incorrect.

   SAMPLE LETTER
   SUBMITTED BY KINSHIP CIRCLE

   Click here to select a word doc., PDF, or print friendly version of this letter to print/send.


Dear Prime Minister Harper and Honourable Government Officials Of Canada:

I urge you to terminate the government-subsidized slaughter of seals. If Canada resumes its seal hunt in March 2008, I renew my pledge to boycott Canadian seafood and tourism.

In the last two years, 98% of seals killed ranged from 2 weeks to 3 months in age. During the annual ambush on whelping grounds, pups are gunned down, bludgeoned, kicked, and thrashed with hakapiks. Some are left to rot on the ice floes.

Last year, sealers killed 215,000 seals, even as more pups perished amid melting ice. Global warming threatens to deplete ice fields in the Gulf of St. Lawrence and off Newfoundland where harp seals breed. If Canadian authorities intend to initiate "real action" on global warming, they should phase-out this unsustainable hunt rather than inflate kill quotas.

It's time to close a contentious industry. In January 2008, the Fur Institute of Canada's Bruce Williams told The Canadian Press the sealing trade is in "crisis" due to anticipated seal import bans in Germany, Italy and Austria. Belgium and Holland have already enacted bans on seal goods.

As you know, the European Commission is considering a ban throughout the European Union. Ironically, Canadian Fisheries Minister Loyola Hearn recently interpreted a scientific review from the European Food and Safety Authority (EFSA) to mean Canada "upholds the...humaneness of hunting practices and techniques." In fact, EFSA's report reveals critical flaws in Canada's Marine Mammal Regulations with regard to animal welfare.

In one of several examples, EFSA recommends seals not be moved, gaffed or hauled until confirmed dead or irreversibly unconscious. Canadian law presently lets hunters hook seals without verifying unconsciousness or death. Photographic documentation depicts sealers dragging alert animals with boathooks. A team of impartial veterinarians once determined 42% of examined seals failed to become insensible from cranial injury. They concluded the seals were cognizant when skinned.

Since ethical concerns do not seem to influence policy, I reiterate my commitment to the international boycott of Canadian seafood and tourism. In the U.S. alone, seafood exports bring billions to Canada's economy. Conversely, the seal hunt has little financial relevance in Newfoundland, where most sealers reside. Sealers fish the rest of the year. Sealing generates a minute portion of their livelihoods.

The hunt lacks ecological, financial or ethical justification. Though officials have used the decline of cod populations in the North Atlantic as grounds to kill seals, there is no conclusive evidence linking harps seals to diminishing cod. Over-fishing is the likely culprit, as noted in past statements from the government's own scientists.

Polls indicate most Americans and Europeans disapprove of the seal hunt, with many prepared to boycott Canadian seafood until it ends. Please permanently cancel the Canadian seal hunt.

Thank you,

2.  CONTACT YOUR LOCAL MEDIA 
(TV, NEWSPAPERS AND RADIO)

In order to spread the news about what is happening in Canada during March and April, we need to get media coverage.

  • Write letters to the editors of your local newspapers (Click here for tips)
    - list of United States media sources
    - Speaking points
  • Call TV and radio stations to ask them to cover this important news
  • Refer your local broadcast and cable TV stations to Sea Shepherd to get a free copy of our Martin Sheen "Save the Seals" Public Service Announcement (PSA)
  • You can offer the Sea Shepherd telephone number: 360-370-5650, so the media can arrange interviews with Sea Shepherd president and founder, Captain Paul Watson.

3.  BOYCOTT CANADIAN SEAFOOD
Like many other groups, All-Creatures.org does not advocate the consumption of any seafood, but for those who do consume it, we urge you to join in the Boycott of Canadian Seafood.
In the early 1980's, boycotts helped shut-down the seal hunt.
Let's make this happen again!

Seafood from Atlantic Canada is a primary focus, especially seafood from Newfoundland. Main targets are:

snow crab, scallops, mackerel, turbot, lobster, mussels, herring, sardines, cold-water shrimp, cod, prawns, and flatfishes

These can be dried, salted, smoked, canned, fresh or frozen. They are sold in grocery stores where they SHOULD (according to US law) be labeled as coming from Canada. They are also sold in restaurants and cafeterias.

Some major brands and companies to boycott are:

Acadian, Atlantic Pearl, Bay Shore, Blue Royal, Breakwater, Brunswick, Cape Cod, Canadian Cove, Century Seafoods, Classic (from Beothic), Clearwater, Deep Sea, Doyle, Fisherman's Finest, Fishery Products International (FPI), Fogo Island, Harbour View, Highliner Foods, Island Pride, Luxury (from Beothic), Northland, Notre Dame Seafoods, Ocean Choice, Ocean Elite, Ocean Leader, Ocean Queen, Ocean Select, Oram's Choice, Quinland, Quin-Sea, Red Lobster, Sea Best (from Beaver Street Co.), Seafreez, Sea Fresh, St. Paul's, World Catch, and, lastly, Violet brand 

If you eat seafood at restaurants or cafeterias, be sure to ask where it's from... and BOYCOTT CANADIAN!
...Better yet, just don't eat seafood. 

4.  Share this information with as many people as possible 
Forward this link to everyone one on your email list. 
Speak out about this atrocity.  Share more information through the links below.

5.  Learn more

Posted March 20, 2008.  Stay tuned for updates to this page.

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