[Ed. Note: Petition to Replace Chickens with Money in Kaporos Rituals, also read Alliance to End Chickens as Kaporos.]
Kapparot is a ceremony practiced by some Jewish communities in the days leading up to Yom Kippur. A live chicken is held above the practitioner’s head and swung three times in a symbolic gesture of transferring the sins of the human to the bird. Then the chicken is often slaughtered right there on the street and may (or may not) be given to the poor.
Crammed in crates, awaiting a ritual slaughter
Participants hold the chickens by their fragile wings, painfully pinned together behind their back. The chickens often scream in terror and pain as their tiny bones snap. After the ritual, the birds then have their throats slit or are stuffed back into their cages until the slaughter ritual that evening or the next day. During all of this they do not have food or water and are left out, stacked in cramped cages on the street or in an open truck. >>Read more about the ritual and modern alternatives
WFAS was on the scene in Brooklyn, NY, with a rescue van for any chickens who escaped and to accept those that might be handed over after use in the ceremony. We were able to save 93 in total, and we, along with our friends at Farm Sanctuary, Catskill Animal Sanctuary, United Poultry Concerns, Eastern Shore Sanctuary and Sunnyskies Bird and Animal Sanctuary will provide life long care for them.