Breaking! Whitemarsh Township In Pennsylvania Passes Six-City Ban On Traveling Animal Circus Acts

Photo Credit: PETA

The township of Whitemarsh, Pennsylvania, has become the latest in the state to ban wild and exotic animal circus acts.

Following similar bans in Pittsburgh and Sharpsburg, the ban affects the six cities incorporated in the township, including the town of Plymouth Meeting, where LuLu Shrine Circus is held every year.

Animal Defenders International (ADI) and local advocate Gigi Glendinning supplied evidence to the township board in support of a ban.

“We are thrilled that Whitemarsh Township has chosen to move with the times and ban the use of wild animals in circuses,” Jan Creamer, President of ADI, said in a statement. 

“I am beyond thrilled with the board’s decision to end these cruel and dangerous animal acts,” shared Glendinning. “For years I have witnessed the inhumane treatment of the animals forced to perform at the LuLu Shrine Circus, and despite my efforts to educate the Shriners, they continued to disregard the facts and put the animals, and the community, at risk.”

Studies and evidence show that the health and welfare of animals in traveling circuses is inevitably compromised due to small and barren mobile accommodations, restricted movement, long journeys, and excessive periods of time spent in transporters and containers. As ADI undercover investigations have documented, animals endure brutal training methods that include systemic violence and abuse.

Proving that attitudes are changing with the times, the American public has been turning away from animal circuses in droves; several have closed, including Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus, while others have gone animal-free and thrived.

More than 90 jurisdictions in 32 states, Including Whitemarsh Township, have taken action to restrict the use of wild animals in traveling circuses. New York City and San Francisco both have bans on wild animal circus acts, and the California legislature approved a statewide ban this month.

Other states are also considering bans on wild animal circus acts. In Pennsylvania, Rep. Melissa Shusterman and 33 cosponsors are behind the bill HB996, which seeks to ban wild animal circus acts throughout the state.

A federal bill to end the use of wild and exotic animals in traveling shows nationwide, The Traveling Exotic Animal and Public Safety Protection Act (TEAPSPA, H.R.2863/S.2121), is also gaining bipartisan support.

Around the world, 46 countries have passed national restrictions on the use of animals in traveling circuses.

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