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June 11, 2014

Waddington’s Auction House Commended for New Ivory and Rhino Horn Policy

HSI urges other auction houses to follow suit

Humane Society International/Canada

  • Rhinos are disappearing. Bob Koons

Humane Society International applauds leading Canadian auction house, Waddington’s, for announcing that beginning July 1, it will stop accepting consignments of items made from elephant ivory (made after 1940) or rhino horn . HSI and concerned advocates wrote to Waddington’s on May 21 expressing concern about the auction house’s sale of products made of or containing items from these imperiled species.

HSI wildlife director, Teresa Telecky, Ph.D., said: “It is never an easy decision for a business to forgo potential profits. That’s why we are encouraged by Waddington’s decision to join international efforts, including that of the British royal family, to reduce market demand for rhino horns and elephant ivory. We urge other auction houses to follow Waddington’s example. Global efforts to save rhinos and elephants must come from all sectors of the society, especially from the auction house industry which is an important stakeholder in the trade in these imperiled species.”

Take Action: Ask Rakuten.com to stop selling ivory.

Linda Bronfman, founding member of International March for Elephants-Toronto and co-founder of Everyone Loves Elephants, said: "We commend Waddington's President Mr. Duncan McLean's leadership among the auction house industry in safeguarding elephants and rhinos. We urge other auction houses in Canada and across the globe to follow suit."

Waddington’s stated that its new policy is “in support of the worldwide concern for the increasing illegal sale of poached rhinoceros horn and elephant ivory.”

Separately, HSI commends the SickKids Foundation in Toronto, to which Waddington’s had said it would donate proceeds from the auction of a rhino horn, for declining to accept the proceeds.

Facts:

  • About 28,000 rhinos of five different species remain in the wild. More than 1,000 were poached last year for their horns.
  • About 35,000 African elephants were poached last year for their ivory tusks.
  • Governments around the world have rallied to the defense of rhinos and elephants, pledging millions of dollars to fight poaching and illegal trade, and crushing tons of confiscated elephant ivory in an effort to educate the public about the catastrophic impact of illegal wildlife trade.

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Media Contact: Raúl Arce-Contreras: +1 301-721-6440, rcontreras@humanesociety.org

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