Legislation Prohibiting Horse Slaughter Signed by Governor Hochul

Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick, 66th Assembly District Manhattan, announced today that Governor Hochul has signed into law, her bill A.5109A/ S.2163B, sponsored by Senator Addabbo, which would prohibit the slaughter of horses for human or animal consumption in New York State.

Assemblymember Glick said, “Horses are cherished animals to many New Yorkers, from farmers to equestrians. These elegant animals are entwined with our nation’s history and are viewed largely as companion animals. I appreciate Governor Hochul signing this legislation, I have worked for 19 years to prohibit the buying, selling, and transportation of horses for the purpose of slaughter in New York, and I am thrilled that it will finally become law.”

Although a de facto federal ban on horse slaughter has been in place since 2007, New York still functions as part of the slaughter pipeline to slaughterhouses in Quebec, Canada. Horses are inhumanely transported on New York highways in crammed semi-trailers without adequate access to food and water, for periods that can exceed 24 hours at a time. Horses are not easily slaughtered due to their skittishness nature, longer necks, and recessed brains, which can lead to horses remaining conscious after being struck with a captive bolt gun. This leads to a gruesome dismemberment without the animal being rendered unconscious. Since horses are not bred to enter the food chain, their meat is frequently tainted with many medications that are not compatible with consumption and pose health risks to humans or other animals that consume the tainted meat.

Building off similar protections afforded to racehorses in 2021, this legislation will put an end to these practices by prohibiting the slaughter of all horses in New York, as well as the buying and selling, transporting, or possessing horses that are intended to be slaughtered for human or animal consumption.