By Bethany Armer
THREE YOUNG semi naked protesters staged a demonstration in Leeds city centre against the unethical treatment of sheep in the wool manufacturing industry worldwide.
Two of the women held placards in front of their chests while the third held a lamb replica covered in blood outside Victoria Quarter shopping centre on November 8.
Event organiser Sonul Badiani-Hamment said the protest was staged to reveal the cruelty that happens in the wool industry every day in countries including the US, Australia and South America.
She said: “We’ve actually released five exposes filmed at 37 different facilities across three continents and they all show sheep being punched in the face, slammed into the ground, and having their necks stomped on for their skin.
“Unfortunately there isn’t a way of ethically sourcing wool because any time animals are exploited for their skin or for their flesh people are there for commercial gain.
“There is no way of wearing cruelty free wool, only cruelty free vegan clothing.
“I think it’s really important that we talk to children from a young age about what’s going on. I find children have amazing minds, they’re really rational and really logical.
“I wish that I had known when I was younger so I could’ve been vegan for longer and save more animals already.”
The wool industry is a very important part of West Yorkshire’s heritage, particularly in Leeds and Bradford.
A Yorkshire Dales farmer slammed the PETA protest and said: “Sheep are healthier for the wool taken off and we still need wool garments, the wool industry is certainly worth something. Wool is removed from our sheep in a friendly way.”
And designer outdoor clothing company Burberry, which has a factory in Castleford, said it ensures the sourcing of all products and raw materials comes from suppliers that are governed by the highest animal welfare standards, including in wool production.
Britishwool.org created the ‘Campaign For Wool’ in 2010 to raise consumer awareness about the unique benefits offered by wool. His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales is actively involved with the campaign and is helping spread the word for voiceless farmers who are facing a drop in the price of wool.
To read up further on the treatment of sheep within the wool industry visit: www.peta.org.uk and to read more about the ‘Campaign for Wool’ visit: http://www.campaignforwool.org/