Weekly updates about issues and actions concerning New York City's Carriage Horses

Current Issue - Past Issues

10 June 2007 - Vol. # 34 (Also see 6 June 2007 - Vol. # 33 - Special Edition)

Letters to the Editor * Volunteer * Your 2 cents * new postcard campaign * merchandise * Michigan accident

Treat our horses humanely
horse on rampJune 4, 2007 - It is very disappointing that the City Council continues to ignore the carriage horse issue, turning their backs on these long-suffering and exploited animals, pretending that it is a major tourist attraction. How many of them know how these horses live - in multistoried fire-trap stables; in small stalls accessed by steep ramps [see photo]; with no opportunity for turnout -- a situation that does not respect a horse's nature.

Many tourists tell us they would like to see the industry shut down. They visit New York City for the theater, museums, restaurants and shopping. They tell us this detracts from our great city. Animals and the many people who advocate for them must be taken seriously by the Council -- particularly if they expect support for their bills or re-elections. Our moral and ethical progression as a city depends on how well we treat both people and animals.

--Elizabeth Forel, Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages

Tabling on Saturday, June 16th
volunteers tablindThe weather is great and the horses need your help. The Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages needs volunteers to help get signatures on petitions to the Mayor and City Council -- and to hold posters. This is not a demonstration but an educational event. It is an excellent opportunity to help the horses and to see how supportive both tourists and New Yorkers are. You can volunteer for one hour or four. We need to know when you will be there so we are sure to have coverage. Please contact Teresa at if you can volunteer.

WHEN: Saturday, June 16th, 2007 WHERE: midtown - information will be given to volunteers. TIME: 1-5 PM

to the horses and to us
June 2, 2007 accidentIf you read our last two Special Edition newsletters you know about the carriage horse who was hit by an SUV last Saturday, June 2nd. It was not picked up by the media. Although the horse had inflammation, according to a spokesperson from the Department of Health (DoH) he did not "sustain any injuries" and was deemed fit to return to work by a DoH veterinarian, which he did - two days later! While we think the whole industry is out of control and is allowed to get away with a lot - this is particularly egregious. The sole purpose of a "carriage horse" is to make money for the driver and carriage company. A horse resting up from injuries suffered in an accident is of no use to the owner. He is high maintenance - best to get him out on the street pulling tourists as soon as possible. We wonder just how much pressure there was on the DoH to give him a clean bill of health just two days after the accident.

If you have not yet done so, please give your very valuable 2 cents to your City Council Member and/or Mayor Bloomberg. This is important for New Yorkers because we vote - and it is very important for out-of-towners because you are all potential tourists who could spend money in our city. Please ask them to pass legislation that would end the carriage horse industry. Tell them that a 2000 pound horse who is out of control is dangerous to himself and to pedestrians. Horse-drawn carriages do not belong in congested NYC. Make reference to the Gothamist story since this did not appear anywhere else. Thanks to everyone who made those calls and sent e-mails.

campaign directed to the Mayor
carriage horseWe have a new post card campaign, which is addressed to Mayor Bloomberg. When we table, we will be giving them out to the public, asking them to complete their contact information and leave with us to be mailed. This is the text:

"Dear Mayor Bloomberg: On June 2, 2007, a carriage horse was hit by an SUV near 7th avenue and 56th Street. Nineteenth century conveyances pulled by 2,000 pound animals do not belong on the congested streets of a 21st century city. As a matter of fact, this practice has been banned in other major world cities, including London, Paris, Toronto and Beijing."

"As you stated so eloquently on Earth Day, "New York is the most modern and technologically advanced city in the world. But in all the key elements of our city's life, we are using 20th century operating systems--and sometimes 19th century systems." This 19th century mode of transportation threatens public safety, affects air quality in one of the most pristine areas of New York and causes noticeable suffering for the animals. It is time to take our heads out of the sand and end this outmoded and inhumane practice. I urge you to call for a ban of horse-drawn carriages in New York City. "

These post cards are available to you at no cost so you can give them to your friends, family and co-workers. We will pay postage to you. Please send us an e-mail at coalitionbanhdc@gmail -- tell us how many you want and provide your address. We STRONGLY SUGGEST that you follow our lead at our table to ensure these cards get mailed to the Mayor -- Buy a quantity of 26 cent stamps for the cards you will be asking people to complete and then take the responsibility of putting them in the mail.

help us raise money for our campaign
cap sleeve t-shirtPlease do not forget our merchandise - good looking t-shirts, caps, buttons and tote bags -- and yes - that shirt for your dog. The weather is perfect to wear the t-shirt that shows our logo that depicts a horse and carriage with the ban sign over the carriage and the horse being freed - along with the message - "There's No Romance in Cruelty" as pictured here - or the standard t-shirt "Show Compassion - Say No to a Carriage Ride."

Please visit our website where you can buy buttons directly from us or click onto our online store at Cafe Press.

Island carriage accident sends 3 to hospital
Cheyboygan Daily Tribune - June 5, 2007 -- MACKINAC ISLAND - A runaway horse pulled a carriage across part of the golf course and through the driveway of the Grand Hotel at Mackinac Island Sunday, causing three people to be taken to the hospital. The carriage, operated by Mackinac Island Carriage Tours, was entering the Grand Hotel's Driveway from Cadotte Avenue, commonly known as Lilac Lane, when the incident occurred about 2 p.m.

"It seems that one of the horses pulling the carriage was trying to shake off something or scratch an itch," said Michigan State Police Trooper Delynn Rice, who investigated the case. "The horse's bridle either came loose or the reins got tangled, but the driver had no control." Rice said the horse then pulled the carriage in a U-turn and across the street to the Grand Hotel's golf course, where it scattered patrons from tables at the Jockey Club before turning again and coming back to the hotel entrance where it was restrained. "The Mackinac Island Ambulance transported one person to the Mackinac Island Medical Center and a fire department rig took two more," Rice stated. "All were checked over and released with no serious injuries." 

"The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look and do nothing" - Albert Einstein

Thank you for caring about the horses, Elizabeth Forel - Coalition for NYC Animals, Inc. for the Coalition to Ban Horse-Drawn Carriages