Animal Rights Groups Urge State Lawmakers To Toughen Cruelty Laws

Apr 16, 2013

State lawmakers are taking up several bills that have animal rights groups either cheering or sneering.

The groups are applauding a Senate panel’s decision Tuesday to approve tougher penalties for animal abusers.

The Michigan Public Radio Network’s Jake Neher has more.

Animal rights lobbyists in Lansing have been busy lately. Under bills introduced recently, serial animal abusers could get up to seven years in prison, and all convicted abusers would be put on a public registry.

But lawmakers also passed a law that opens up the possibility of a wolf hunt in the UP. That’s something animal rights activists are trying to repeal with a statewide vote.

Jill Fritz is with the Humane Society. She’s not surprised at the amount of attention these issues are getting.

“Michiganders have made it very clear that they care a lot about animals in our state, and we want to be able to have a say in passing stronger laws to protect them,”  she says.

The groups have been urging lawmakers to reject a measure that would make the wolf hunt immune to a voter referendum.