WASHINGTON, D.C. — Representatives introduced Thursday the Veterans for Mustangs Act (VMA) that would amend the 1971 Wild-Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act to help better protect American wild horses and burros on federal lands, reduce or eliminate the need for inhumane helicopter roundups, and provide jobs and avenues for healing American veterans with Post Traumatic Stress and other disorders resulting from combat.
Introducing the VMA were U.S. Reps. Lisa McClain (R-MI), Troy Carter (D-LA), Barry Moore (R-AL), Maria Salazar (R-FL), Jesus “Chuy” Garcia (D-IL), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Nancy Mace (R-SC), Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Buddy Carter (R-GA), John Moolenaar (R-MI), Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY), Joe Neguse (D-CO), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX) and Dina Titus (D-NV).
“We applaud Reps. McClain, Carter, and the rest of the Members backing the Veterans for Mustangs Act for their leadership and dedication in protecting both our American heroes and the iconic American horses upon whose very backs this country was built,” Marty Irby, executive director at Animal Wellness Action and eight-time world champion equestrian, said. “The Veterans for Mustangs Act would create jobs for veterans, help curb the Bureau of Land Management’s round-up of wild equines on federal lands and save the taxpayers billions of dollars by administering common-sense immunocontraceptive birth control instead of rounding up and warehousing masses of horses and burros.”
“The current handling of our wild horses is not only inhumane but also results in extensive financial burdens for the Bureau of Land Management,” Rep. Lisa McClain (R-MI) said. “The Veterans for Mustangs Act would provide humane population control to our wild horse program, provide a unique form of healing for our American veterans, and save the taxpayers billions of dollars. That’s a win-win-win.”
“Horses are some of our nation’s most cherished animals and should be treated as such,” Rep. Troy Carter, Sr. (D-LA) said. “This bill prioritizes humane fertility controls to manage populations of wild, free-roaming horses and burros while also providing jobs and healing for our veterans with post-traumatic stress and other disorders resulting from combat. It’s a win-win solution that will save taxpayer dollars and give these animals the care that they deserve.”
“The Veterans for Mustangs Act will help protect wild horses and burros on our federal lands from being rounded-up and sterilized in facilities on the taxpayer’s dime,” Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) said. “I’m pleased to join Reps. McClain, Carter, and others in introducing this bipartisan legislation that will save horses, federal tax dollars, and promote interaction between veterans with PTSD and wild equids, providing alternative forms of healing and therapy.”
“We’re elated to see the Veterans for Mustangs Act reintroduced in bipartisan fashion and believe this legislation will be a game changer in the fight to help wild horses and veterans alike,” said Cameron Ring, founder of Veterans for Mustangs and a former National Guard Soldier. “We offer tremendous thanks and applause for Reps. McClain, Carter, and the Members of Congress leading this effort.”
“We are so grateful for the Members of Congress who’ve stepped in to help better protect the wild horses and burros on the range that I’ve been deeply connected to and have observed since childhood.” said Monty Roberts, the ‘Man Who Listens to Horses,’ one of the leading horsemen on the planet. “The Veterans for Mustangs Act will enable veterans with post-traumatic stress and other traumas to engage in activities that will produce meaningful results for the betterment of equines and humans alike.”
The VMA is endorsed by Veterans for Mustangs, Animal Wellness Action, the Animal Wellness Foundation, the Center for a Humane Economy, the American Horse Protection Society, numerous American Legion Posts across the U.S., Monty Roberts and Flag Is Up Farm, Horse Sense and Healing, War Horse Creek, Devil Dog Depot Equine Sanctuary and Rescue, Wish for Our Heroes, and more than 70 groups and organizations across America.
Animal Wellness Action is a Washington, D.C.-based 501(c)(4) whose mission is to help animals by promoting laws and regulations at federal, state and local levels that forbid cruelty. The group champions causes that alleviate the suffering of companion animals, farm animals, and wildlife, and it advocates against dogfighting and cockfighting and other forms of malicious cruelty. It also confronts factory farming and other systemic forms of animal exploitation. To prevent cruelty, Animal Wellness Action promotes enacting good public policies and monitors the enforcement of those in place. To enact good laws, the group believes citizens must elect good lawmakers, and it helps educate voters on which candidates care about animal issues as well as those who are hostile to them. Animal Wellness Action believes helping animals helps us all.
Center for a Humane Economy is a Washington, D.C.-based 501(c)(3) whose mission is to help animals by helping forge a more humane economic order. The first organization of its kind in the animal protection movement, the Center encourages businesses to honor their social responsibilities in a culture where consumers, investors, and other key stakeholders abhor cruelty and the degradation of the environment and embrace innovation as a means of eliminating both. The Center believes helping animals helps us all.
Animal Wellness Foundation is a Los Angeles-based private charitable organization whose mission is to help animals by making veterinary care available to everyone with a pet, regardless of economic ability. The group organizes rescue efforts and medical services for dogs and cats in need and help homeless pets find a loving caregiver. The Foundation advocates for getting veterinarians to the front lines of the animal welfare movement; promoting responsible pet ownership; and vaccinating animals against infectious diseases such as distemper. They also support policies that prevent animal cruelty and alleviate suffering. The Animal Wellness Foundation believes helping animals helps us all.