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#54: COVID-19 Shuts Down Slaughterhouses, Sickens Workers

Animal Justice 2 May 2020 4

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May 1, 2020

Camille is joined by guest host Katie Sykes, law professor at Thompson Rivers University, while regular host Peter recovers from a brain hemorrhage—but don’t worry, he’ll be okay!

Camille and Katie talk about Animal Justice’s false advertising complaint about a cruelty cover-up at King Cole Ducks factory duck farm; Health Canada’s failure to immediately ban torturous strychnine poison; and Camille’s recent Globe & Mail op ed about why the Vancouver Aquarium shouldn’t get a dime of bail-out money unless it stops displaying animals and transitions to becoming a sanctuary.

There’s lots of news, including Canada Goose’s announcement that it will move away from using new fur (progress, but still humanewashing) and a loss in court in a lawsuit filed over the wrongful removal of anti-Canada Goose ads in Toronto. But some good news: the Calgary Stampede is cancelled, so no animals will suffer in its rodeo this year.

For the main topic, Camille and Katie dive into the massive COVID-19 outbreaks at slaughterhouses in Canada and south of the border. Animals aren’t the only victims of slaughterhouses—the meat industry also treats workers abysmally. Slaughterhouses are already one of the most dangerous workplaces imaginable, and now they have become coronavirus hotspots due to the meat industry’s failure to prevent the coronavirus from spreading. Slaughterhouses are being forced to shut down, and there are now calls for a criminal workplace investigation after at least two Alberta slaughterhouse workers are dead. Meanwhile, the meat industry is already starting to “depopulate” animals because of its inability to pivot and adapt to new market conditions.

This episode’s zero is an egg farmer who described his choice to kill 61,000 chickens in this manner: “the longer I was there the more disgusted and disappointed I was knowing that I’m not going to see anything put back in my checkbook.”

And our hero is our very own Peter Sankoff, who continues to help law students find summer internships despite his recent health challenges. We miss you, Peter!


Animal Justice

Peter Sankoff

Camille Labchuk


Animal Justice

Peter Sankoff


Animal Justice

Camille Labchuk

Special thanks:

To our producer, Shannon Milling, and podcast editor Micahl Contos.

To Kevin Lacroix for the podcast logo and for the musical sting in our podcast intro.

To DJ Quads for our intro, transition and outro music.

2019 Canadian Law Blog Awards Winner

2019 Canadian Law Blog Awards Winner

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Paw & Order is Canada’s only animal law podcast, and is hosted by two of Canada’s leading animal lawyers, Camille Labchuk and Peter Sankoff.

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#53: Kendra Coulter On Tiger King, Covid, & Our Blatant Disrespect for Animals

Animal Justice 18 April 2020

April 17, 2020 Hosts Camille and Peter sit down for a fascinating interview with professor Kendra Coulter of Brock University. The wide-ranging discussion covers her important empirical research on animal law enforcement models, and her recent op ed on why …continue

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