Animal advocates ask Westfall to curb circus

| 29 Sep 2011 | 09:22

    WESTFALL - An upcoming circus appearance has moved animal rights activists to seek protective legislation from Westfall Township. But a local official says the request comes too late. In a Wednesday statement to the press, David Perle, a spokesman for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) revealed the request. Perle said that in a Wednesday letter, the group urged “the lawmakers to enact legislation that would ban the use of bullhooks, electric prods, and other devices commonly used to inflict pain on elephants.” He said their request came in light of the scheduled Sept. 6 visit in Westfall Township by the Carson & Barnes Circus—”a chronic violator of the federal Animal Welfare Act—whose animal care director was caught on videotape viciously attacking elephants with bullhooks and electric prods.” Westfall Township Secretary-Treasurer, Lisa Green confirmed receipt of the letter but said the supervisors are not going to address the letter, since they are not scheduled to meet again until Sept. 7, the day after the circus’ scheduled appearance. She said the letter had been preceded by a phone call asking if the Best Western Inn, where the Westfall Fire Department is hosting the circus, falls within Westfall’s jurisdiction. It does. Green said that in any event, action by the township to consider the suggested ordinance would have required at least a month, including its introduction, advertising and a public hearing. Prior to the inquiries, Green said the supervisors were not aware of the upcoming circus performance.