Preview: Animal Welfare Act: Oversight of Exhibition

Delcianna Winders

Director of Animal Law Program
Vermont Law & Graduate School

The Animal Welfare Act covers animals used for exhibition—zoos, circuses, marine parks, movies, even social media. But the act’s standards are outdated and inadequate. Primates are kept in solitary confinement. Bears are confined in concrete pits, their babies taken away for cub-petting operations. As a result, state and local laws, as well as other federal laws, particularly the Endangered Species Act, are important auxiliary tools for those concerned about animals exploited for entertainment. This presentation details how the AWA governs animal exhibition, and the tools deployed by advocates to make up for the act’s shortcomings.

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