Representative Lori A. Ehrlich
District: Eighth Essex
Political Party: Democrat
State Web Page: https://malegislature.gov/People/Profile/LAE1
Personal Website: http://loriehrlich.com
State House Pets: http://statehousepets.com/bailey/
Rep. Ehrich is sponsoring numerous pieces of animal protection legislation this session.
An Act relative to ivory and rhinoceros horn trafficking clamps down on illegal ivory and rhino horn sales by restricting the sale, trade, and distribution of ivory and rhino horn in Massachusetts, ensuring that the Commonwealth doesn’t contribute to the unprecedented global poaching crisis. Elephants are being killed at an unsustainable rate; 35,000 African elephants were slaughtered in 2012 alone to satisfy the ivory market, an average of 96 per day. The United States ivory market is among the top globally, and a recent report ranked Boston/Cambridge as the seventh largest U.S. market.
An Act relative to the use of elephants, big cats, primates, and bears in traveling exhibits and shows prohibits the use of elephants, big cats, primates, and bears in traveling shows in Massachusetts. These shows—using dangerous animals—are not only detrimental to animal welfare, but also present a public safety risk. These traveling shows subject highly intelligent, social animals to coercive and abusive treatment and a life on the road where they are deprived of exercise, and the ability to express their most basic, natural behaviors.
An Act further regulating the enforcement of illegal hunting practices modernizes penalties for poaching—some of Massachusetts’ poaching penalties haven’t been updated in nearly a century—and enter Massachusetts into an interstate law enforcement network, ending our status as a poacher’s paradise. This legislation updates our penalties to bring them in line with those of other states and thus deters would-be poachers, while also protecting wildlife, tourism, and business in the Commonwealth.