WAYNE PACELLE: ‘After purging thousands of Animal Welfare Act inspection reports and violation notices that used to be available to the public and were searchable online, the political operatives who took over at the U.S. Department of Agriculture a year ago say they now want to turn over federally funded inspections of puppy mills, roadside zoos, and research labs to the very groups using the animals.
This plan would enrich these parties with your tax dollars and set up a free-for-all when it comes to animal care and well-being in the United States. While we have long criticized the USDA for lax enforcement, we have always valued the independence of those government inspections and worked to make them better and more vigorous and hard-hitting.
This proposed retreat from an independent, government-run inspections program is the latest deregulation maneuver by the USDA, which last month proposed eliminating a previously approved USDA plan to strengthen animal welfare standards for farmers operating under the organic animal welfare label’. SOURCE…