Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

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By Mary Leipziger
Observer Senior Staff Writer 

Nike Turns Australian Kangaroos Into Running Shoes, Group Alleges in Protest Outside the Nike Store in Santa Monica

Kangaroo Protection Act (HR 917) – a bill introduced in Congress that will prohibit the importation and sale of kangaroo products

 

Nike Allegedly Turns Kangaroos Into Cleats. #KangaroosAreNotShoes

7/9/22 a protest outside the Nike Store in Santa Monica demonstrate against the shoe giant’s continued use of kangaroo skin in soccer cleats.

"Nike is one of the biggest buyers of kangaroo skins used in soccer cleats," wrote " said the Center for a Humane Economy in a press release it released with Los Angeles for Animals.

"In New South Wales alone, more than 40,000 kangaroos are killed every month (even during Covid lockdown) solely for this commercial purpose. There are no farmed kangaroos, and this killing results in the largest land-based slaughter of wildlife in the world. Two million kangaroos are killed each year, including 400,000-to-500,000 joeys.

"The protest is geared to expose the extraordinary cruelty of the commercial kangaroo industry Nike supports — an industry that kills at least 1,000 ‘waste joeys’ every night after shooting their mothers for skin. The methods of killing joeys by decapitation or bludgeoning in service of high-end leather is comparable to the widely condemned clubbing of baby harp seals for the fur trade."

We sent a few questions to Natasha Dolezal , deputy director of campaigns for Center for a Humane Economy:

What was the point of the protest: To shine a spotlight on the cruel killing of 1,000 kangaroos taking place every night in the dark across Australia out of the public's view. We want Nike to stop supporting this massacre of kangaroos for their skins for their 'k-leather' soccer cleats. Nike is the second largest buyer of kangaroo skins in the world – they drive this inhumane and unsustainable industry.

Who organized it: The protest was organized by the Center for a Humane Economy in collaboration with partners in Australia (International Kangaroo Protection Alliance, Animal Justice Party, Animals Australia, World Animal Protection, Collective Fashion Justice, the Kindness Project, etc). Our partners on the ground organizing in California were Los Angeles for Animals.

Nike Allegedly Turns Kangaroos Into Cleats. #KangaroosAreNotShoes

What do you hope to achieve?: In the short term, we hope consumers and the public will immediately stop supporting Nike and stop buying kangaroo leather cleats. And lend their voices in support of the Kangaroo Protection Act (HR 917) – a bill introduced in Congress that will prohibit the importation and sale of kangaroo products. Ultimately, our goal is to end this outdated cruel industry to ensure the survival of kangaroos across Australia for generations to come.

The group wrote that the "protest is part of the second Global Day of Action against Nike supported by a coalition of 18 different animal protection groups in the United States, Europe, and Australia. Protests will occur at Nike stores across Australia and in major cities like Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, and Canberra."

 

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