"Today, Tennessee Walking Horses are known throughout the industry
as the breed that shows abused and tortured horses."

~ Jim Heird, Ph.D., Do Right By The Horse, February 2010

"If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity,
you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men."

~ St. Francis of Assisi

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

NEWS and ARTICLE - HIOs Agree To Penalty Recognition Accord

This is great news that I was given from Thehorse.com. Click here for the article. I posted the article text below so everyone can read it.

The International, NWHA, SSHBEA, SHOW, Kentucky WHA, MFTHBA, Western International WHA, HOA, Oklahoma WHA, WHOA, FOSH, and PRIDE have all agreed to mutually honor fine penalties issued for HPA violations. This means that people will be considered on suspension until the fines are paid. In this way, the people who are violators can't show or exhibit horses until ALL phases of the penalty have been finished. The HPA database will be one of the sources that show management can use to find out of any of their exhibitors are currently on suspension and/or have paid the fine.

In the past, exhibitors were allowed to show as soon as their suspension was done without having paid the fines. Now they will have to pay the fine to be able to show again.

This is a great step towards making change. Let's just hope it's enforced since we all know there are plenty of exhibitors out there who still show even though they are under suspension. Let's hope the HIOs are made aware if they allow someone to show who is under suspension and are punished accordingly. If you go to a show and see someone is showing while still under suspension, you can anonymously report it to the USDA. This will help with getting violators to own up for their actions in abusing horses.


HIOs Reach Penalty Recognition Accord

by: Pat Raia

May 16 2011, Article # 18251

Horse Protection Act (HPA) violators who do not complete all phases of penalties levied against them could be disqualified from exhibiting animals at Tennessee Walking Horse and other gaited horse shows under an agreement reached by a group of Horse Industry Organizations (HIOs).

The HPA prohibits "soring," the deliberate injury of a horse's feet and legs to achieve a high-stepping so-called "big lick" gait. The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service enforces the Act, certifies HIOs that sponsor horse shows, and trains Designated Qualified Persons (DQPs) who are hired by HIOs to inspect horses presented for exhibition at the horse shows they sponsor.

The International Walking Horse Association; National Walking Horse Association; Spotted Saddle Horse Breeders and Exhibitors Association; Sound Horses, Honest Judging, Objective Inspections, Wining Fairly; Kentucky Walking Horse Association; Missouri Fox Trotting Horse Breed Association; Western International Walking Horse Association; Heart of America Walking Horse Association; Oklahoma Walking Horse Association; Walking Horse Owners Association; Friends of Sound Horses (FOSH); and Professional Regulation and Inspection for Dedicated Equestrians (PRIDE), all agreed to mutually honor fine penalties issued for HPA violations, said FOSH president Lori Northrup.

Under the agreement, the 12 HIOs will all consider an individual on suspension until all fines connected to the violation are paid. The USDA's HPA violators database will be used as a source for penalty information, Northrup said.

The agreement is intended to prevent HPA violators from exhibiting animals until they have completed all phases of penalties levied against them.

"Some HIOs issue a fine and a suspension for HPA violations, but some people will just complete the suspension phase of the penalty and not pay the fine," Northrup said. "This closes that loophole."

Sue Hamilton, director of PRIDE, views the agreement as a positive step toward promoting HPA compliance.

"We're going to have to work together if we want to make progress," Hamilton said.

David Sacks, APHIS spokesman, said the agency welcomes the HIOs’ decision to collaborate.

“By agreeing to honor each others' Horse Protection Act penalty actions, the HIOs will further assist in our combined efforts to prohibit sored horses from participating in shows, sales, exhibitions, or auctions,” Sacks said.

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