PETA threatens to sue Toronto, Astral Media for removal of anti-goose ads from Canada


People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals threaten to sue the city of Toronto and Astral Media for removing anti-goose ads from Canada.

The animal rights group said on Friday it would take legal action against the city and the Astral if it failed to pass ads that the group paid in September to criticize the luxury jackets manufacturer for using goose and coyote feathers in your Coats

The ads showed images of animals with captions saying "I am a living being, not a piece of skin" and "I am a living being, not a coat" and were placed in bus shelters between the Canada Goose headquarters and the house of the company's CEO, Dani Reiss.

PETA's assistant apparel campaign manager, Christina Sewell, told the Canadian press that the ads were expected to last four weeks but were left in less than 24 hours in September.

A woman wearing a Canada goose jacket passes by PETA protesters in front of the New York Stock Exchange during the Canadian company's IPO in March 2017. (Mark Lennihan / AP)

"Astral let us know that they had to pull the ads because they had many numerous complaints," she said.

A spokeswoman for Bell Media Inc., owner of Astral, confirmed that it removed the ads because they did not agree with a part of the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards that restricts ads from derogatory or publicly mocking organizations.

Ads do not violate standards, says PETA

PETA says it is not violating standards.

"PETA's position is that its right to free expression includes the right to place this particular work – in its current form – on the ownership of the city, and that the removal of his work violated that right," the group said in a statement. letter sent to the city, Bell Media and Astral Media on Thursday.

PETA says it will start legal action against the city of Toronto and Astral Media if it does not pass on ads the group paid to file in September. (PETA / Canadian Press)

Asked about the ads, Toronto city spokesman Eric Holmes said that Astral "is responsible for enforcing the standards and any decisions related to the approval and removal of advertising content from those assets."

Sewell, who called the ads "benign," said PETA does not have a timeline for how soon it will take legal action if the ads are not republished but commit to carry out its threat.

A Canada Goose spokeswoman did not respond to a comment request.

Canada goose defends use of fur

The company has long been targeting PETA.

PETA members, sometimes dressed as coyotes, protested outside the clothing company's stores and repeatedly charged Canada Goose as a perpetrator of "shameless cruelty."

"There are so many cruelty-free alternatives out there and things that are made from plants or synthetics. Skin is extremely damaging to the environment," Sewell said, noting that Canada Goose has not contacted PETA since it unveiled Publicidades.

"We have been campaigning for several years and we are under a lot of pressure to get a direct response from the company."

Canada Goose has already contested complaints about the use of fur, saying it is committed to ethical treatment of animals, that "having skin peels around a jacket interrupts the flow of air that helps protect the face from freezing" and uses goose feathers is "one of the best natural insulation in the world".

"We do not tolerate any intentional maltreatment, negligence or acts that cause excessive suffering to animals," the company's website says. "Our standards for the supply and use of fur, fleece and wool reflect our commitment that the materials come from animals that are not subject to maltreatment or undue damage."


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