Calif. City Approves Ban On Fur Sale

November 9, 2011 by staff 

Calif. City Approves Ban On Fur Sale, Putting animal rights over fashion imperatives and its own vibrant shopping scene, West Hollywood’s leaders have given final approval to a first ban in the United States on the sale of fur clothing within city limits.

The five-member city council of the municipality wedged between Beverly Hills and Hollywood voted 3-1 with one abstention early on Tuesday to approve the ordinance, said city councilman John Heilman, who voted no.

The ban was tentatively adopted by the council on 20 September and had been expected to gain an easy enactment two weeks later.

But it ran into stiff opposition from the local chamber of commerce and the fur industry, whose main trade group, the Fur Information Council of America, happens to be based in West Hollywood.

Opponents say nearly half of the 200 apparel shops in the town sell at least some fur items, and that merchandise made with animal pelts is estimated to account for up to $2m (£1.2m) in revenues for those businesses each year.

But the city’s political establishment ultimately embraced the ban, won over by supporters’ arguments that furs are produced from animals that are inhumanely killed for their pelts.

However, the date the measure will take effect was pushed back to 21 September, 2013, from the original 30 June, 2012, in part because city officials want to conduct their own study on how the ordinance will affect businesses, Heilman said.

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