Victory! New York City Mayor Signs Wild-Animal Circus Ban into Law

Published by Michelle Kretzer.

Update: With one signature, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio set the record straight: Public sentiment for animal-abusing circuses decays more and more every day, and New Yorkers won’t have the cruelty in their city.

With signing Intro 1233, which bans wild and exotic animals from circuses in the city, New York City has told the world that wild animals don’t exist for our entertainment.

This outstanding victory will have a ripple effect around the world, confirming that animals in circuses are not willing performers. Thank you, New York City!

Originally published June 21, 2017

Chalk up yet another resounding victory for animals in circuses. In a 43-6 vote, New York City Council Members have prohibited all traveling circuses from bringing wild animals into the city. Right on the heels of Ringling Bros. circus’s final show and as Los Angeles considers a similar ban, it has never been more clear that people don’t want to watch scared, confused animals perform pointless tricks.

New York City Council Member Rosie Méndez first introduced a version of this groundbreaking bill 11 years ago, and she’s been working to see it passed ever since. Her cosponsor, Council Member Corey Johnson, pulverized Ringling representatives at a hearing about the bill last year in a verbal match that would make any animal advocate proud. New York City residents called and e-mailed their council members urging them to pass the measure. And PETA members across the country stood outside circus performances, rain or shine, with protest signs held high.

IG: @JiveAssTofurkey

Today, all their efforts have come to fruition. Among the animals who will be helped by the ban are the elephants and zebras used in UniverSoul Circus’ notoriously cruel shows. When the ban takes effect, they’ll never be beaten and forced to perform in New York City again, and they’re one step closer to freedom from cages.

PETA’s senior vice president of campaigns, Dan Mathews, who’s spent years pushing for New York City’s circus and horse-drawn carriage bans, said, “Wild animals have been suffering in New York City circuses since 1794, when monkeys were forced to perform at Ricketts’ Circus on Broadway. Council Members Rosie Méndez and Corey Johnson have made history—and made New York a much more civilized city.”

For circuses still abusing animals, the message is loud and clear: The future of entertainment is animal-free.

What You Can Do

Help keep the victories coming. Tell UniverSoul Circus and Garden Bros. Circus to showcase only willing human performers and end the animal acts.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind