Top 10 Disappointments of 2013
1. Lawmakers didn’t pass the SAFE Act to protect horses from slaughter.
2. Major food retailers didn’t take a stand against equine slaughter.
3. There is no wild horse curriculum in public schools.
4. Helicopter roundups continue in summer heat and winter cold.
5. Director of the Wild Horse and Burro Program Joan Guilfoyle dissed us twice by refusing to take hundreds of thousands of signatures in her hands.
6. The government shutdown interrupted the horse and burro adoptions programs and may have affected care standards.
7. Other government organizations rounded up wild horses without protecting them from danger of slaughter.
8. Bureau of Land Management only provided shelter for a small percentage of horses and burros in their care.
9. Navajo Nation President Ben Shelley reversed his decision to stop selling horses to slaughter.
10. Secretary Sally Jewel did not address the failures of the wild horse program.
As we look forward to 2014 we want to focus on what we can do to affect change. I hoped that after Ken Salazar left the Department of the Interior the wild horse and burro program would improve, but Sally Jewel hasn’t done anything to change the failing program either.
The Secretary was kind enough to send a representative to speak with me when I was in Washington DC but he said that Ms. Jewell had not even been briefed on the wild horse and burro program because she had other priorities.
We must take the well-being of the captive horses and burros in our own hands by sharing the Great American Mustang Exodus Campaign widely. If we band together to provide homes for the horses and burros, we could force the BLM to change their focus from caring for captives to managing wild horses on the land.
Sally Jewel has turned her back on the horses and burros. The situation is alarming. There are more captive horses than ones living free. If we don’t do something drastic to save the horses in 2014, we may have no more running free.
“One person can make a difference, but together we can make change!” – Robin Warren
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