The actress mentioned the filthy conditions in which the animals are kept at mink fur farms, which have all the elements for diseases to spread rampantly.
Trigger warning: contains images that may be upsetting to some.
In the wake of several individuals testing positive for the coronavirus at a Fraser Valley mink farm in British Columbia (BC), Pamela Anderson has written a letter to Premier John Horgan, urging for the closure of all farms in the Canadian province.
The actress, who is an honorary director of the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), wrote in her letter, "In light of the news that there’s currently a COVID-19 outbreak on a mink farm in British Columbia, I’m writing to ask that you close down fur farms in the province immediately."
Before Fraser Health declared a COVID-19 outbreak at the mink farm, reports from several countries across the globe showed that minks were contracting the virus from human workers. In addition to this, Anderson mentioned that the filthy and cramped-up spaces that minks are kept in have all the elements needed for diseases to spread uncontrollably.
Anderson also made a reference to the culling of minks in Denmark due to the outbreak in fur farms there. Denmark is at the center of a scandal after there were orders to kill 17 million minks following the outbreak on fur farms in the country. Needless to say, it has caused a controversy like none other and raised serious questions on animal rights.
"Minks on fur farms all over the world—including in Denmark, Greece, the Netherlands, Spain, and the U.S.—have been infected with the novel coronavirus by workers, and Denmark started killing all 17 million minks on its fur farms after a mutant strain of the virus spread from minks to humans," said the onscreen star.
She added that minks at Canadian farms are "warehoused inside filthy, cramped wire cages amid their own waste. These stressed, injured, and often sick animals are so closely packed together that blood, urine, and excrement can easily contaminate adjacent cages. Not only are these conditions extremely cruel to animals, they also create a perfect breeding ground for deadly diseases."
Noting that the fur industry was already at death's door, the Canadian-born actress said that this was all the more reason to shut down these abysmally-run fur factories in BC.
"Even before the pandemic, fur was a dying industry," the actress went on to say. "In recent years, former fur-wearers, including Queen Elizabeth II, have had a change of heart and major fashion brands—including Chanel, Prada, Gucci, and Michael Kors—have ditched fur. More than a dozen countries around the world have shut down fur farms, and the world’s oldest and largest fur auction houses, North American Fur Auctions and Kopenhagen Fur, are exiting the industry."
Although the government took steps to prevent the spread of the virus at fur farms in BC, Lesley Fox, the executive director for the charity group, Fur-Bearers, said these efforts were not enough, as reported by Vancouver Sun.
"The ministry knew this was a problem—they knew mink are highly susceptible to this virus and despite whatever efforts they made... it was a failure. They can’t contain it," said Fox, who works to remove the commercial fur industry through the charity group.
With the entire world having been severely affected by the pandemic, Anderson ended her letter to the Premier by saying, "The world is a much different place than it was even a few months ago. No one, including minks, deserves to die of COVID-19, and I hope to hear that you will make the lifesaving decision to shut down British Columbia’s mink farms without delay."