A B.C.–born celebrity is calling on the province to end fur factories after a COVID-19 outbreak at an animal farm has been confirmed in the Lower Mainland.
Animal-right activist and screen star Pamela Anderson, who is an honorary director of the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), sent a letter to Premier John Horgan in the wake of Fraser Health’s confirmation on December 6 that eight individuals tested positive for the coronavirus at an unnamed mink farm in the Fraser Valley.
Fraser Health stated that animal testing is underway, and hasn’t yet confirmed if there is any transmission between humans and animals.
A mutated coronavirus had been detected at mink farms in Europe, raising concerns that this mutation may impact the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Anderson’s letter to Premier Horgan is as follows:
December 8, 2020
The Honorable John Horgan
Premier of British Columbia
I hope this letter finds you well. Thank you for all that you’re doing to help keep my fellow Canadians safe during these uncertain times. In light of the news that there’s currently a COVID-19 outbreak on a mink farm in British Columbia, I’m writing to ask that you close down fur farms in the province immediately.
Minks on fur farms all over the world—including in Denmark, Greece, the Netherlands, Spain, and the U.S.—have been infected with the novel coronavirus by workers, and Denmark started killing all 17 million minks on its fur farms after a mutant strain of the virus spread from minks to humans. As you can see in this PETA video of Canadian mink farms, minks are warehoused inside filthy, cramped wire cages amid their own waste. These stressed, injured, and often sick animals are so closely packed together that blood, urine, and excrement can easily contaminate adjacent cages. Not only are these conditions extremely cruel to animals, they also create a perfect breeding ground for deadly diseases.
Even before the pandemic, fur was a dying industry. In recent years, former fur-wearers, including Queen Elizabeth II, have had a change of heart and major fashion brands—including Chanel, Prada, Gucci, and Michael Kors—have ditched fur. More than a dozen countries around the world have shut down fur farms, and the world’s oldest and largest fur auction houses, North American Fur Auctions and Kopenhagen Fur, are exiting the industry.
The world is a much different place than it was even a few months ago. No one, including minks, deserves to die of COVID-19, and I hope to hear that you will make the lifesaving decision to shut down British Columbia’s mink farms without delay.