Help Wild Wonders and Other Wildlife Refuges Continue to Offer Wildlife Programs
We are writing to ask you to join us in voicing your opposition to State Senate Bill SB-313 introduced on February 15, 2019 by California State Senator Ben Hueso.
It is titled the “Circus Cruelty Prevention Act” which is DECEPTIVE. The title does not represent what is in the bill, and the text of the bill will DECIMATE HUNDREDS OF WILDLIFE ORGANIZATIONS in California.
SB-313 would prohibit wildlife outreach programs unless they are provided by an organization which is accredited by the AZA or GFAS. AZA membership is expensive and most of its member organizations are large Zoos and Aquariums. In fact, there are less than 25 organizations in California with an AZA accreditation! GFAS sanctuaries do not provide outreach programs.
While the AZA does promote standards of care for all member organizations, not having an accreditation by AZA does not mean that animal care and welfare can be sub-standard or ignored. All organizations that house wild animals must be licensed by the US Department of Agriculture. Besides annual inspections by the USDA, organizations are inspected by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife along with other local authorities. Additionally, many smaller, private organizations like Wild Wonders, belong to the Zoological Association of America whose accreditation attests the adherence to strict care standards.
The passage of SB-313 as it is will eliminate conservation and environmental education programs seen by hundreds of thousands of children and adults each year. Also eliminated will be therapy programs for Senior Centers and hospitals, programs for Scouts, 4H, and training colleges.
Wild Wonders delivers close to 1,000 education programs to schools, libraries, and special events each year. Without being able to continue these programs, Wild Wonders and hundreds of other smaller private zoos will go out of business, and the incredible learning opportunities we supply to children will cease to exist.
We urge you to read the text of the bill via the link below, and to contact your State Representative and State Senator to voice your objection to SB-313.
One of the organizations that is very active in raising awareness and opposition to this bill is The Cavalry Group. Their website has a link to a pre-written opposition letter that you can customize and send to your Senator. Check out their site at:
If you have any questions, please reach out to us.
Jackie and the entire staff at Wild Wonders
Text of SB-313
To contact Ben Hueso’s office directly:
Email Address for Ben Hueso: Ben.Hueso@sen.ca.gov
To find contact information for your Representative and Senator: