Costumed PETA ‘Elephant’ to Greet Bronx Schoolchildren With Anti-Circus Message

Supporters Will Ask Parents to Steer Clear of Cruel Circus

For Immediate Release:
March 17, 2015

Contact:
David Perle 202-483-7382

New York – On the eve of UniverSoul Circus’ New York City opening, PETA’s lovable costumed “elephant” will greet schoolchildren outside P.S. 130 with elephant-friendly activity booklets and a powerful message for kids and their parents—that every family can do their part for animals routinely suffering from abuse and deprivation in the circus by avoiding UniverSoul’s upcoming performances.

Where:           P.S. 130, Prospect Avenue and E. 156th Street, Bronx

When:             Wednesday, March 18, 2:15 p.m.

“Most children would never choose to attend the circus if they knew that elephants used in shows are denied everything that’s natural and important to them,” says PETA Foundation Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders. “PETA is calling on parents—and anyone who’s concerned about the plight of animals—to steer kids toward circuses that have ditched animal acts for willing human performers.”

Last month, an animal control officer in Atlanta reported witnessing a handler traveling with UniverSoul who inserted a bullhook—a weapon that resembles a fireplace poker with a sharp metal hook on one end—into an elephant’s sensitive mouth, for which a UniverSoul representative and the elephant handler are each currently facing a cruelty-to-animals charge. UniverSoul’s animal acts were not allowed to perform in the Bronx for a brief period last year as a result of failing to provide tigers with adequately sized cages. PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—will also hold a protest with Long Island Orchestrating for Nature at 6 p.m., just before UniverSoul’s opening.

For more information, please visit PETA’s website PETA.org.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.

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“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