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IHP launches a petition to ban horse drawn carriages in Florence


IHP has today launched a petition on the Change.org platform (click here to sign the petition) to gather signatures in support of the proposal to the Florence City Council for the abolition of horse drawn carriages. The initiative comes in the wake of the accident that took place on 14 June, when a carriage belonging to the ‘fiaccherai’ (horse carriage drivers) hit two cars parked in Piazza Signoria, including that of the Minister for the Interior. 

‘What has been described as an accident due to the fury of a bolting horse once again makes headlines of how these animals are used’ – says IHP President Sonny Richichi -. ‘These carriages are a form of exploitation which is unacceptable in 2021: the tradition of carrying tourists through the streets of Florence forces the horses into a hard labour, in a totally inadequate, unhealthy and dangerous urban environment. The accident in Piazza Signoria shows how dangerous the presumption, unfortunately still widespread, of exploiting animals for human activities can be, without knowing and respecting their nature and needs. Horses do not bolt, but react to negative stimuli or fear in the way that is most natural to them: escape.’  

‘Moreover’, adds Richichi, ‘when they are not working, these animals are forced to live in stables with insufficient space to respect their primary ethological needs, such as moving freely in large spaces, grazing and being in a herd with their peers. In this petition we ask the City Council - as a civilised and mature society - to place the protection of animals at the forefront of public awareness, for a shift away from these practices and ban on this bizarre method of carrying tourists around the city centre in horse-drawn carriages.  We ask the Council not only to protect the enjoyment of tourists, but also the health and welfare of animals.  We are relying on the fact that appropriate forms of protection of the rights of workers (fortunately, very few) are found by the Administration, to guide them along a protected conversion path: we really don't want families to lose their source of livelihood.  As far as we are concerned, we are available to house the horses of the ‘fiaccherai’ at our recovery centre to ensure them a life of freedom and well-being, respectful of their primary ethological needs’.




Florence: horse used to pull the tourist carriages hits two parked cars [VIDEO] - 14 June 2021

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