Senators Larson and Schilz Denounce Agricultural Groups Allying Themselves with the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)

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By Administrator, on Nov 4, 2011

LINCOLN - While most agricultural organizations in Nebraska have stood in opposition to the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and their tactics, one has announced that it will work with HSUS. Following the recent announcement that HSUS will be working with the Nebraska Farmers Union, two Nebraska State Senators have voiced their opposition to the new working relationship between the two groups. Nebraska State Senators Tyson Larson of O’Neill and Ken Schilz of Ogallala announced in a joint statement that, “Any Nebraska agricultural group working with anti-animal agricultural groups, such as HSUS, is not an agricultural group that has the best interests of Nebraska’s farmers and ranchers at heart and will struggle to be taken seriously as a viable group within the Nebraska Legislature.”

While popular belief is that HSUS distributes proceeds to local animal shelters to aid in rescuing neglected and needy animals, in reality, they have been threatening agriculture across the nation through initiatives based on misleading information. HSUS spends less than one half of one percent of its budget on animal shelter aid ($527,566 of its $120 million budget in 2010); instead they spend millions each year on lobbying, fundraising, and purposes other than the direct care of animals. HSUS received a “D” grade from the American Institute of Philanthropy, a charity watchdog, because of its poor practices. “HSUS misrepresents themselves as an aide to animal shelters to help their public perception, but in reality they do very little to help animals. The fact that they now want to come into Nebraska and influence our policies and a supposed pro-animal agriculture organization is helping them is unacceptable. Nebraska’s agriculture and livestock industries are doing an excellent job in the area of treatment of their animals through programs such as Beef Quality Assurance.” said Senator Larson.

Recently five Nebraska agriculture organizations that included the Nebraska Farm Bureau and the Nebraska Cattlemen announced their “We Support Agriculture” campaign that is focused on further educating Nebraskans about the positives of agriculture in Nebraska and the possible dangers that HSUS presents. The “We Support Agriculture” initiative has drawn positive feedback from across Nebraska. It is extremely important that we educate all of Nebraska about animal agriculture and how serious of a threat HSUS poses. “Our farmers and ranchers are responsible caretakers of their livestock, and we must support them and their industry; we do not want an organization such as HSUS making decisions for us on how we should raise our livestock. As Nebraska legislators, we will stand firm and not tolerate any cooperation with HSUS, who seek only to weaken the culture and economy of rural Nebraska,” commented Senator Schilz.

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