Activists Ask President Obama & Secretary Salazar to Stop the Assault on America’s Wild Horses and Burros

For Immediate Release

The Cloud Foundation
Contact: 

Ginger Kathrens 719-633-3842 ginger@thecloudfoundation.org

Activists Ask President Obama & Secretary Salazar to Stop the Assault on America’s Wild Horses and Burros

Musician Sheryl Crow, Actors Ed Harris, Wendie Malick, and Over 100 Organizations Demand Roundup Moratorium, Protesting Nevada’s Calico Complex Roundup to begin December 1

COLORADO SPRINGS, CO - Sheryl Crow speaks out for the wild horses and burros on
America’s public lands in the west. The multi-GRAMMY®-winning singer-songwriter
and mustang owner joins The Cloud Foundation, over 130 organizations,
scientists, authors and celebrity supporters calling on President Obama,
Members of Congress and the Department of Interior to place an immediate
moratorium on all wild horse and burro roundups until a long-term and humane
policy to manage the animals is developed.

“With one voice we are insisting that our government
stop managing these beautiful and important animals to extinction” —Sheryl Crow

The Bureau of Land
Management’s (BLM) removal plan for Nevada’s Calico Complex wild mustangs is
fueling outrage across the country and internationally. In a unified sign-on letter (full text below), wild horse supporters outline their
opposition to the Obama Administration's October 7, 2009 announcement
(http://www.doi.gov/news/09_News_Releases/100709.html) regarding the management
of wild horses and burros. Groups oppose moving 26,000 wild horses to purchased
lands in the east and the current government practice of removing entire wild
horse and burros herds from public lands specifically designated for the
animals by Congress in 1971.

 “We ask that President
Obama or Secretary Salazar cease all BLM roundups as of this date to prevent
further suffering.  We request that
the government and BLM begin to work in good faith with wild horse advocates
for a sustainable solution. The Calico Roundup, scheduled to begin in December
and continue through the dead of winter, is inhumane and must be stopped!”
—Sheryl Crow

Upon hearing about the
BLM’s plans for the large-scale removal of 2,500 horses in northwest Nevada
near the Black Rock Desert, more than seven thousand citizens submitted public
comments to the BLM opposing the Calico Mountain Complex Round Up, scheduled to
begin on December 1, 2009. Public comment has been extended through November
22, 2009 according to the BLM.

Currently more than 33,000
wild horses are stockpiled in government holding facilities at a cost to
taxpayers of $100,000 a day. The scheduled removal of 2,500 from Nevada will
bring that total to more than 35,000.

“We already have enough wild horses in pens. Adding
more horses to those already held in confinement, when they are much safer on
the range is shortsighted, inhumane and fiscally irresponsible.”—Ginger Kathrens, Emmy Award Filmmaker & Volunteer
Executive Director of the Cloud Foundation.

The BLM will pay the
private contractor $610 per horse rounded up for an estimated total of nearly
$2 million for the Calico roundup alone according to BLM spokesperson, Tom
Gorey. Branding, vaccinating, sterilizing and processing of horses to be placed
in government holding will cost several million more. The BLM hired the same
contractor for the controversial roundup of the famous stallion, Cloud, and his
Pryor Mountain herd in September, 2009. Bands including two-month-old foals
were chased down off the mountaintop by helicopter for 10-15 miles in more than
90 degree heat resulting in trauma and lameness. (http://www.thecloudfoundation.org/index.php/news-events-a-media/youtube-videos/146-lamefoal)

"The government
is acting in defiance of the spirit and intent of the 1971
Free Roaming Wild Horses and Burros Act
which Congress passed
unanimously —Julianne French, wild
horse advocate. (http://www.wildhorseandburro.blm.gov/92-195.htm)

The 1971 Act preserves wild horses and burros
in over 300 areas of publicly owned rangeland in the west, forbidding their
exploitation, harassment and removal. Regardless, only 30 million acres remain
of the 54 million acres designated primarily for wild horse use in 1971. Over
100 herds have been  completely
removed by the BLM and most remaining herds are too small to insure their
long-term survival. The BLM's current policy of eradicating these herds is a
betrayal of the wishes of the American public.

Sheryl Crow, with wild mustang and burro supporters, calls
the public to action urging all to write, e-mail, fax and phone Secretary of
the Interior, Ken Salazar, their congressional representatives and President
Obama. The list of contact phones, e-mails, faxes and mailing addresses is online here.
(http://www.thecloudfoundation.org/index.php/news-events-a-media/action-alerts/198-government-contacts)

“Its time for all of us to speak up for our Wild
Horses and Burros so we do not lose these living legends and inspiring symbols
of our freedom in America.” —Sheryl Crow

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