SAN FRANCISCO – On Tuesday, March 30th, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California dismissed a challenge to the San Francisco fur ban and upheld its constitutionality.
The International Fur Trade Federation (IFF) has made several attempts to amend its complaint since it filed a lawsuit against the city, SF County and Dr. Grant Colfax, the director of the SF Department of Public Health.
This time, however, the US District Judge Richard Seeborg will not allow the trading group to be changed again. In his 9-page judgment, he wrote that “none of the IFF’s arguments are convincing” and cited the SF regulation as “selective” and “misleading”.
IFF argued in the ruling that “the text of the ordinance does not support the distinction between online sales and retailers outside of the city and retailers outside of San Francisco who have a physical presence in the city”.
However, the judge said that “the text, structure and legislative history of the fur ban supports the city’s practical decision to enforce it against both local retailers and national retailers who maintain a location.”
The ordinance states, “It is unlawful to sell, advertise, sell, offer for sale, trade, give, donate, or otherwise distribute a fur product in San Francisco,” according to the American Legal Publishing Corporation . Violations of this law are $ 500 for the first offense, $ 750 for the second, and “up to $ 1,000 for each additional violation within one year of the date of a second or subsequent violation.”
In March 2018, SF became the first major city in the United States to ban fur sales. This was passed unanimously by the SF Board of Supervisors and signed by former Mayor Mark Farrell. It came into force in January 2019.
Former supervisor Katy Tang, who introduced the proposal, told the SF auditor at the time that “more than 50 million animals are violently killed worldwide each year to help the fashion industry,” and said it was wrong, “these To continue practice “. ”
Prior to voting on the ban, the IFF and the Fur Information Council of America sent a letter to the Board of Supervisors warning them that if it were passed, there would be “the loss of millions of dollars in tax revenue” and “the likely increase” would be with retail vacancies in the heart of the city, ”the SF auditor said in March 2018. They said this was“ a dangerous precedent to open the door to further action against leather and wool, which are already the focus of active animal rights campaigns ”.
Following the SF ban, California became the first state in the nation to ban fur products in October 2019. Governor Gavin Newsom said in a tweet on October 12, 2019 that the bill (AB 44) is “one of the strongest animal rights laws in US history. ”
It will come into force in January 2023.