WHAT THE BILL WOULD DO
AB 44 would ban the sale of new fur products such as coats, shoes, and accessories in California. Similar bans already exist in West Hollywood and San Francisco. The bill doesn’t apply to used items — family heirlooms, for instance, or fur used for religious reasons. Shearling and leather are also exempt. It would be the nation’s first statewide ban.
WHO SUPPORTS IT?
The Humane Society of the United States is a sponsor of the bill. Major retailers including J. Crew, Gap, and H&M also support it and say it’s time to end inhumane fashion trends. Assemblywoman Laura Friedman, a Glendale Democrat and the bill’s author, has said the bill models the values of Californians, who last year passed a ballot measure to ensure that egg-laying hens and certain other farm animals have larger cages.
The Fur Information Council of America objects to the bill along with independent furriers, who call it a government overreach that would put them out of business. When San Francisco enacted its fur ban, one furrier moved to Texas and opened shop there, and opponents say more California businesses will follow suit if AB 44 passes. They also predict legal challenges to the bill.
Earlier this year, Newsom told a class of second graders that he’d once owned a pet otter. He also signed a bill banning fur trapping in California, with his office tweeting that it would bring the state “one step closer to a #CaliforniaFurAll.” On Oct. 12, 2019, he signed AB 44, stating: “California is a leader when it comes to animal welfare and today that leadership includes banning the sale of fur.”