Horse Carriages have long been a source of animal abuse in our city. We successfully passed the Carriage Horse Heat Relief Bill in 2019, which has taken us closer to sustainability and equity in our city. However, this bill only protects against heat. It is simply a damage-control option. We now need to work to further protect our animals and rid the city of abusive practices. We should be pushing for electric carriages to replace horse-drawn carriages. We should be focused on an equitable transition, keeping in mind those in our communities that rely on this practice as a source of income. We should also be focused on supporting our community-led animal shelters.
In 2020, an audit of Animal Care Centers of NYC (ACC) found significant deficiencies that caused sicknesses among animals staying in the shelters. The Comptroller found 21 necessary improvements, but without adequate support, we cannot expect miracles. We need to continue funding animal shelters in the city to ensure our animals are safe and well cared for. We can continuously update our practices of reporting and assessing animal abuse claims.
Divesting from corporate agriculture industries will help fight climate change, promote a healthier lifestyle, and support the humane treatment of animals everywhere. The beef and dairy industries are among the highest polluting in the world today. New York City should be leading the fight to divest from these industries and promote a safer environmental future. Doing so will help keep our waterways clean, our forests full, and our air breathable. We should not be supporting a corporate process that both abuses animals and pollutes our environment.
We can fight back by using our city dollars. We should begin phasing out beef purchases for public schools, jails, city hospitals, and wherever else the city spends money in an unsustainable way. This would constitute a huge first step in keeping our city cleaner and protecting our environment from the onslaught of greenhouse gasses produced by corporate animal agriculture.