Bonnie-Jill Laflin, NBA's First Female Scout, Joins Animal Welfare Institute in Full Court Press to End Horse Slaughter

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Washington, D.C. -- The Animal Welfare Institute (AWI) is pleased to welcome television sports personality and NBA insider Bonnie-Jill Laflin to AWI’s campaign to end horse slaughter. Bonnie-Jill - the NBA’s first and only female scout - has been actively involved in the horse community her entire life. She will help AWI expand its efforts to educate the American public and Members of Congress about the continuing cruelty of horse slaughter.

"It is hard to fathom that we still permit the slaughter of American horses," said Bonnie-Jill. "Horses are powerful and intelligent, and a symbol of American freedom and spirit - they deserve more respect. I’m anxious to partner with AWI to build support for protecting these graceful and amazing athletes."

AWI began the national campaign to end horse slaughter in 2001, after witnessing the abuse of horses collected by killer-buyers at a livestock auction in Pennsylvania. Over the past decade, AWI has documented inhumane conditions at horse slaughter facilities and during horse transport throughout the U.S. and across the border. Although horse slaughter plants - operating in the U.S. as recently as 2007 - are dormant for now, the same numbers of American horses are being slaughtered. Sadly, the only thing that has changed is the location of the slaughterhouses - now across the border in Canada and Mexico.

"We are extremely grateful to have Bonnie-Jill join us on this campaign," said Chris Heyde, AWI’s deputy director of government and legal affairs. "As a knowledgeable horsewoman and management team member for one of the nation’s elite sports franchises, Bonnie-Jill can help us reach out to a whole new audience to shed light on this shameful practice."

With Bonnie-Jill on board, AWI will redouble our efforts to expose the horse slaughter industry and remind the public and Members of Congress that horse slaughter has not been banned in the U.S., and American horses are still being killed. Those profiting from the brutal practice continue to hide abuse and spread misinformation, but with Bonnie-Jill’s help, we can help take horse slaughter out of the game.

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Media Contact:
Chris Heyde, AWI, (202) 446-2142