(FUR TRADE/ANIMAL WELFARE) WEST HOLLYWOOD — In September 2013, West Hollywood, California, a city known for their progressive stances and strong support of animal rights, passed a law to ban the sale and distribution of fur products.
Subsequently, high-end fashion retailer Mayfair House—whose inventory is centered largely around fur products and luxury fur coats—sued WeHo for their citywide ban, claiming the law was unconstitutional.
On Tuesday, U.S. District Court Judge George H. King dismissed the lawsuit, leaving it up to Mayfair House to decide whether to appeal his decision or pursue the issue in state court.
According to King, the city’s attempts to “promote community awareness of animal welfare, foster the city’s goal to be a community that cares about animal welfare, and further the city’s reputation as a Cruelty Free Zone for animals” by prohibiting fur sales was a “legitimate interest,” rejecting claims that the ban was a violation of the U.S. Constitution.
In a press release, the Humane Society of the United States commended the decision:
“We applaud the court’s decision to uphold the city’s groundbreaking ordinance,” the Humane Society said.
“The ruling makes clear that the Constitution does not prevent West Hollywood or any other city from using its lawmaking powers to protect animals by prohibiting the sale of cruelly produced products.
West Hollywood’s ban on fur was the first of its kind in the United States. Although it continues to receive heavy criticism from fashion retailers and businesses affected by the ban, the progressive law serves as model for not just the rest of the nation, but the rest of the world as well.
The compassionate SoCal city also prohibits the retail sale of cats and dogs, pet rentals, cat de-clawing, exotic animal performances, and recognizes their human companions as “pet guardians” rather than “owners.”
— Kayla Newcomer, exclusive to Global Animal