The end of the year can be a busy time for anyone and for SAFE it was no exception. While the period leading up to our annual appeal was akin to being run over by a freight train, it was also a very exciting time as the fruits of SAFE’s work reached the public in many different ways. SAFE was in the driving seat of this particular run-away train.
In just the last three months we put out seven media releases and were quoted in the media at least once a week on a range of issues. From party pills testing on animals, to rodeo, to any awful act of animal cruelty, SAFE has become the go-to organisation for animal issues.
In case you missed them, the following are some of the highlights from this busy period.
In your living room
The first step to making change is to create awareness and since October SAFE has had a presence in homes all around the country with our new TV adverts.
The animated ad ‘Cage is a cage’ revealed the egg industry’s plan for cruel new cages.
Imagine a world …
The ‘Imagine’ television ad, first screened in December, features singing animals and a flying pig escaping the factory farm. This groundbreaking ad gives hope that factory farming can end, if we all make the effort.
Produced and kindly donated by Animals Australia, the clip has been watched 46,000 times on YouTube and has had a huge effect already in Australia.
We aim to continue screening it throughout 2013. Help SAFE keep it on air and get this very important message out to all New Zealanders during 2013!
Stop Factory Farming video
One of the many features launched as part of the new Stop Factory Farming campaign is a simple yet powerful video presenting the truth about factory farming in New Zealand. The video has an interview with executive director Hans Kriek, uses animations and real footage of conditions on the farms.
Once watched, you can do more! Each individual has the power to improve the lives of animals.
SAFE leapt into action in November to highlight the cruelty of the Hamilton indoor rodeo event, and to challenge the Hamilton Council’s support of the event. SAFE volunteers erected a huge billboard outside the Council offices and made a public demonstration of opposition to rodeo cruelty that couldn’t be missed.
7 December – After two years of consideration the Government made the expected announcement to phase out standard battery cages but allow a new type of battery cage, the ‘enriched’ colony cage.
The National Government had the opportunity to end the cruel confinement of hens but failed to do so. The legislation suits no one except the big farm operations that can afford to invest in new cage systems which will benefit. It won’t please the small farmers, the consumers, the animal welfare groups, and of course least of all the animals.
Before these new cages become established over the next ten years there is a chance to signal to the industry that the New Zealand public will not accept new colony cages. Take action by sending an e-card to ask David Shearer, as Leader of the Opposition, to say no to colony cages.
One News viewers heard about another kind of cruelty to chickens in December. Featuring the life of chickens raised for meat, the story itself was confused with the layer hen issue and distracted viewers by talking about the use of antibiotics, but it was significant to see this important issue highlighted on national television.
Chicken meat production is the most hidden of all the cruelties of factory farming, with few New Zealanders understanding the scale of this industry. Horrifically, modern chickens are Frankenstein birds that have been bred into a creature that is unable to live out a natural lifespan even if rescued.
In November SAFE launched a new initiative promoting a vegetarian lifestyle as the best way to help animals, the environment and ourselves. With a new website and materials it is designed to make it as easy as pumpkin pie to try out a vegetarian lifestyle – what better way to start the year than to pledge not to eat 96 animals this year!
My favourite part of the site is the profiles of the awesome individuals representing what a positive choice it can be. For example, Richie Hardcore is a DJ on Auckland station BFM and competitive Muay Thai kickboxer – check out his black eye!
2013 – a new year
Expect big things in 2013 as the Stop Factory Farming campaign really gets underway! SAFE will be using all its resources — its volunteer network, lobbying power, social media network, and access to mainstream media — to bring an end to factory farming. I look forward to New Zealanders all moving forward on animal issues in 2013.
Eliot Pryor, Campaign Director