Volunteer Day @ Tower Hill – Jan 2019

My friends Cathy and John took part in a volunteer day at Tower Hill Stables Animal Sanctuary in Essex. This is another great way to give back to the animals and you get to have lots of cuddles too! It is always helps up refocus and remember what we are fighting for in our activism.

Over to Cathy to hear what her and John got up to.

“Tower Hill Sanctuary is run by Fiona Oakes (distance runner), her partner Martin and mother Meg and is in the process of relocating, today my husband John and I attended a volunteer work party at the new location that at the moment houses horses and cows, eventually when the new place is ready the other animals will come as well.

Today we painted fences, shovelled manure and helped muck out, it was a pleasure to help out for such a great cause. We made friends with the animals especially one beautiful horse that didn’t want me to paint the fence, she wanted me to fuss her and pull up long grass for her to eat, and so I painted with her head on my shoulder.

It’s so nice to spend time with vegan activists and get stuck in. We can’t wait for the next volunteer day.

Cathy x”

If you would like to take part in the next volunteer day check out Tower Hill Stables on Facebook. If you’re not in Essex see where your local sanctuary is and find out what you can do to help out.

Plumes x

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Volunteer Day @ Tower Hill – Jan 2019

A Weekend Of Activism – January 2019

Veganuary is very food post heavy due to all the new products and menus coming out but it’s also important to highlight the vegan/animal rights activism that is taking place.

On Friday Havering Vegan Action (of which I am part of the admin team) took part in our regular Earthlings Experience event where we show footage from UK farms and slaughterhouses and start conversations with members of the public who stop to watch. We had some productive conversations with many people taking away more information to look into.

On Saturday I took part in the No Whaling March to The Japanese Embassy. Japan have decided to exit the IWC agreement and start commercial whaling again after originally signing the agreement in 1982. You can sign the petition to ask the Japanese Government to reconsider this here.

On Sunday I took part in the CAGED NW (Campaign Against Greyhound Exploitation and Death Nationwide) protest against the GBGB (Greyhound Board of Great Britain) Annual Awards Ceremony at the Park Plaza Hotel at Westminster.

I was charged with handing out leaflets to the public (so I still have my voice!) many of people I spoke to were anti-racing and supported the protest, others were tourists who were interested in the issue as it was something they weren’t aware of. I also spoke to some of the residents who lived opposite the hotel. I encouraged them to ask the hotel to not host these awards I’m future if they were bothered by the noise of the protest.

There were other events this weekend that I couldn’t make it to, there is so much going on!

If you’re a new vegan (or not) and you would like to get more involved in activism look on Facebook for events taking place in your area. If you have any questions reach out to the organisers and they will happily put your mind at ease.

Let me know what activism you have been getting up to in the comments below.

Plumes x

A Weekend Of Activism – January 2019

A week of animal activism

I’ve had a week standing up for the animals. On Monday I attended Essex Pig Save (which I wrote about here). Save’s are a good way to see the condition of animals in your local area and reinforces your conviction to fight for the animals.

On Tuesday I joined The Humane League to do some craftivism outside McDonalds in Leicester Square. The point of this was to encourage McDonalds to sign up to the Better Chicken Committment (which you can read about on THL’s website) to improve the welfare of millions of chickens each year.

On Friday I took part in our local Earthlings event in Romford. We’ve had a few weeks off so it was good to get back out there.

Yesterday was International Cube Day organised by Anonymous For The Voiceless. Last year 190 events took place on Cube Day and this year it was up to a massive 500 including the first event in the Middle East. We managed to get 22 people to take veganism seriously in Romford and there were also other local events going on in Southend and Chelmsford. I’ll update this when I find out the global tally.

Update – 491 cubes actually happened on International Cube Day with 22,188 people going away taking veganism seriously.

Have you been doing any activism this week? Let me know in the comments below.

Plumes x

A week of animal activism

Essex Pig Save October 2018

As I happened to be off work I joined Essex Pig Save for their October vigil this week. I luckily grabbed a lift from my friend Simona but if you are travelling by public transport people will give lifts from the nearby West Hordon train station.

The Save Movement was started in Toronto, Canada a few years ago. The aim is to offer comfort to the animals in the last moments of their lives, repent for the animals we have paid to be killed prior to us going vegan and share footage of these animals to help to persuade others to change their habits and stop eating and using animals.

There is a police presence and we have an agreement with the slaughterhouse that the trucks carrying the pigs will stop for two minutes so we can see them. Often the slates on the lower levels are shut but many have selfie sticks so we can see into the higher levels. After each truck goes in we hold a two minutes silence along the boundary of the property.

This can be upsetting for the activists so we comfort eachother.

In-between the trucks arriving we have placards to show to drivers who drive past and we do receive positive reception from many.

There are animal saves all over the world now so if you are interested I would recommend you go to The Save Movement’s website to find your local group. If there isn’t one you can ask for advise to how to set up your own.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post.

Plumes x

Essex Pig Save October 2018

Animal Rights March 2018

Yesterday saw 10,000 vegans come together in London to stand up for animals. There were marches taking place in 23 cities across 14 countries.

We marched from Westminster to Hyde Park and then heard speeches from a variety of speakers. It was so good to walk alongside like-minded people united in the cause. We even made the news!

Here is a variety of photos from the Facebook event page, I didn’t take any myself as I needed both hands to hold my placard!

This is the third annual animal rights march in London organised by Surge and it is great to see the numbers doubling each year.

Did you take part in any of the marches? Let me know about your experiences in the comments below.

Plumes x

Animal Rights March 2018

THL McDonalds Campaign

The Humane League is a vegan animal rights charity that originated in the US in 2005 and expanded into the UK in 2016. Their aim is to reduce the most amount of suffering for the largest number of animals.

Their last campaign in the UK was to eliminate cages from the supply chains of companies using eggs. 80 companies committed to phasing out cages including Noble Foods who have 4.3 million chickens in the UK.

Their focus has now come to broiler chickens (those raised for meat). Along with a coalition of other animal groups The Humane League is asking companies using chickens in their supply chains to sign up to the Better Chicken Commitment. This outlines a number of requirements to improve chicken welfare.

The most important factor relates to the breed. The breeds permitted under the Better Chicken Commitment grow slower so the birds are able to support their own weight and are less likely to have physical issues that a lot of the chickens raised for meat suffer from today.

The following companies have signed up to the Better Chicken Commitment

Marks and Spencer

Unilever

Danone

Nestlé

Zizzi

Ask Italian

Coco Di Mama

Pret a Manger

Prezzo

There is a notable market leading company missing from this list… McDonalds.

McDonalds uses millions of chickens in their supply chains globally and if they agreed to the commitment it would improve the lives of so many chickens and also encourage other companies to follow suit.

McDonalds only use free-range eggs and organic milk so it is hypocritical that they are not committed to improving the welfare of the chickens in their supply chains.

The Humane League has carried out a week of action this week encouraging McDonalds to make the change and do the right thing.

You can find everything about the campaign at https://www.ImNotLovinIt.co.uk.

The events started off on Saturday where a group of protesters toured 14 McDonalds locations in London, educating the public and speaking to individual store managers.

On Tuesday we took our own Ronald to McDonalds HQ in East Finchley where we encouraged employees to throw wet sponges at him. Unfortunately none of them took us up on the offer!

The public were more than happy to have a go when we took the stocks to Kings Cross and which was reported on in The London Economic.

On Wednesday a flash mob danced their way from HQ to Leicester Square.

On Thursday we delivered our petition with over 236,000 signatures to HQ along with a large “unhappy” meal.

You can see the videos of the week’s events on The Humane League UK Facebook page.

We need to keep the pressure on McDonalds, you can help by contacting them on social media, emailing, phoning and speaking to your local store manager. Go to https://www.ImNotLovinIt.co.uk/ to add your voice to the cause.

Plumes x

THL McDonalds Campaign

Tell Tesco To Dump Hogwood

Last year vegan charity and campaign group Viva! undertook an undercover investigation into Hogwood pig farm in Warwickshire who supply pork to Tesco.

What they found was truly horrific. When Viva! approached Tesco about their findings Viva! (which were featured in the Sunday Mirror), Tesco refused to drop it as a supplier – reassuring customers that it takes animal welfare ‘extremely seriously’ and that it expects producers to meet ‘stringent, industry-leading requirements’.

Viva! returned this year to find little had changed and in fact had become worse.

“Once again, heart-breaking footage unveils abhorrent conditions that cannot be ignored – overcrowding, pigs covered in excreta, barren, filthy conditions, animals abandoned to die, and cannibalism. In difficult-to-watch scenes, one piglet who had been dumped in a gangway with other sick pigs, was being eaten alive by others. The same callous abandoning of animals in need was filmed during Viva! Campaigns first investigation inside Hogwood.

You can watch the footage at viva.org.uk/hogwood

So Viva! is calling for people to take a stand against this Red Tractor approved farm and tell Tesco to drop Hogwood as a supplier.

You can do this by

1. Signing the petition

2. Writing to Tesco directly. You can use the following template from Viva!

Dear Dave Lewis, Tesco Plc Group Chief Executive

In view of Viva! Campaigns shocking new undercover investigation at Hogwood Farm in Warwickshire, I urge you to immediately drop the farm as a supplier. Last year Viva! Campaigns exposed abhorrent conditions on Hogwood. In response to this to this Tesco refused to drop the farm as a supplier assuring customers that it takes animal welfare ‘extremely seriously’ and that it expects producers to meet ‘stringent industry-leading requirements’.

It is a shock, therefore, that a second investigation inside Hogwood, carried out only weeks ago (July 2018), reveals overcrowding, pigs covered in excreta, barren and filthy conditions, animals abandoned to die, continued use of farrowing crates and… cannibalism. In difficult-to-watch scenes, a piglet who has been dumped in a gangway with other sick pigs, was literally being eaten alive by others. This is not the first time that the dumping of sick pigs has been filmed here. The same callous abandoning of animals in need was filmed during the first investigation inside Hogwood.

The problems at Hogwood have not gone. In fact in some cases they have got worse. It is clear that Tesco does NOT take animal welfare seriously nor the concerns of customers. Your company’s failure to keep pigs from pain and suffering at Hogwood shows that your assurances are meaningless.

Tesco must act now and hold Hogwood accountable. I urge you to immediately drop the farm as a supplier.

Yours Sincerely

Name and Address

Please send to –

Dave Lewis, Group Chief Executive, Tesco PLC Head Office, Tesco House, Shire Park, Kestrel Way, Welwyn Garden City, AL7 1GA

3. Contact Tesco on social media

Facebook:

Help Hogwood Pigs! One year on, what has changed? Viva!’s second investigation of Hogwood Horror Farm has exposed shocking abuse and undeniable welfare breaches. Help #HogwoodPigs. Sign the petition—every little helps. www.viva.org.uk/hogwood/

Twitter:

I’ve pledged to help #HogwoodPigs. Join me in urging @Tesco to dump Hogwood Horror Farm. Sign the petition now—every little helps www.viva.org.uk/hogwood/ @vivacampaigns

Instagram:

Help Hogwood Pigs! I’ve signed the petition urging @tescofood to dump Hogwood Farm! Will you help close Hogwood Farm once and for all? See the videos and follow the link on @vivacharity #HogwoodPigs

4. Take part in a demonstration at a Tesco store on Viva’s nationwide day of action, this Saturday 11th August. Find your local event here.

Customers can have an impact and enact change. Please don’t be a bystander.

Plumes x

Tell Tesco To Dump Hogwood