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Food Justice and Veganism

North VegansNorth Vegans is a new ARC program based in North Minneapolis and nearby metro areas, which is focused on food justice, ending food deserts and making veganism accessible to all.

North Vegans is led by Northsiders who want to provide a positive way for the community to meet and greet fellow locals interested in plant-based eating, work on improving easy affordable access to healthy plant-based meals, and make our local vegan community more inclusive and diverse.

 
 
Open StreetsCome by our table when we launch on Saturday, September 20 at the Open Streets/Harvest Festival on Lowry Avenue! We’ll be giving out info on plant-based eating and free goodies for the whole family, including stickers and comic books. Stop by our table and pick up one of our North Vegans recipe booklets, designed for going vegan on a budget and featuring easy-to-make vegan recipes from around the world. While you’re there, stroll along Lowry Avenue and take in all the free activities and live performances! The tabling area is located at the NE corner of Penn Ave. N and Lowry Ave. N in Minneapolis.

Second Screening of COWSPIRACY Added

Cowspiracy_cowAre you sad because you couldn’t make the September screening of COWSPIRACY? Wipe those tears because tickets just went on sale for a second screening on Thursday, October 16, 7:30- 9:21 p.m. at the Landmark Lagoon Cinema, 1320 Lagoon Ave. in Minneapolis!

You can buy tickets for the second screening here. There’s lots of buzz about this film; make sure you don’t miss it!

Bake for Their Sake Vegan Bake Sale Fundraiser for Cuddle Coats

Cuddle Coats bunniesWould you like to warm the hearts of injured wildlife? Join us for our Bake for Their Sake vegan bake sale on Sunday, September 14 from noon-4 p.m. at Ethique Nouveau, 317 W 48th St. in Minneapolis. Indulge in all of your favorite vegan goodies for a great cause. Proceeds from the bake sale will benefit ARC’s Cuddle Coats program which accepts donated furs and accessories and ships them to our partner wildlife rehabilitation centers for orphaned and injured wildlife to cuddle with during the rehabilitation process. We have a huge stack of donated furs piled up and we would like to get them shipped as soon as possible! To volunteer at the bake sale or bake vegan goodies for this event, please contact Alex Beane at alex@animalrightscoalition.com. Volunteer bakers are asked to bring a copy of the recipe.

COWSPIRACY: The Sustainability Secret

Cowspiracy_cowThe Animal Rights Coalition is proud to bring COWSPIRACY to Minnesota on Tuesday, September 16 at 7:30 pm at the Lagoon Cinema in Minneapolis.

COWSPIRACY: The Sustainability Secret is a groundbreaking feature-length environmental documentary following an intrepid filmmaker as he uncovers the most destructive industry facing the planet today, and investigates why the world’s leading environmental organizations are too afraid to talk about it. As eye-opening as the film Blackfish and as inspiring as An Inconvenient Truth, this shocking yet humorous documentary reveals the absolutely devastating environmental impact factory farming has on our planet.

This screening has sold out. Stay tuned; we’re working on booking a second one.

Day of Action at Whole Foods

rabbit_whole_foodsJoin animal advocates on Sunday, August 17 in asking Whole Foods to stop selling rabbit flesh, and asking Whole Foods customers to join us at the St. Paul Whole Foods Market, 30 Fairview Ave. S, St. Paul, Minnesota from 11 am to 2 pm!

While the organizers of this event do not support the slaughter of any animal, this event is focused on Whole Foods’ new pilot program to sell rabbit flesh. It has been confirmed that Whole Foods is now selling rabbit flesh in every Minnesota location. Whole Foods is attempting to create demand for rabbit flesh and is sourcing from states that have passed Ag-Gag laws making it illegal to document abuses behind farm walls. Rabbits have almost no protections under the law as the USDA considers them exempt from the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act.

Together we will send a peaceful message to Whole Foods that introducing new flesh foods is not okay. We will have signs and flyers and ask shoppers to sign a petition and to fill out comment cards politely asking Whole Foods to stop the sale of rabbit flesh.

An Exceptional Life

Vonnie at the 1990 March for Animals in Washington, D.C.

Vonnie at the 1990 March for Animals in Washington, D.C.

We’re sad to report that Animal Rights Coalition Founder Vonnie Thomasberg passed away on July 13. Vonnie founded ARC in 1980 and for over 30 years defended the rights of nonhuman animals and provided leadership and inspiration.

Jim Mason, author of Animal Factories and The Ethics of What We Eat with Peter Singer, An Unnatural Order, and co-founder of The Animals’ Agenda magazine sent this tribute to Vonnie: “We ‘old timers’ who knew and worked with Vonnie over the years will miss her greatly, for she was a great soul and fun to be with. All of us benefit from her work, for she was a pioneer and leader in the building of the American Animal Rights movement.”

“Sensing the rising awareness and restlessness catalyzed by Peter Singer’s 1975 book, Animal Liberation, she founded Animal Rights Coalition to put that into action for animals in the Twin Cities. With ARC, she organized some of the very first conferences to bring together speakers and activists from all over the country to talk about issues, strategies, tactics, and actions for animals.”

 
“Some of the then-young activists who attended her conferences went back home to Boston, New York, Washington, DC, Chicago, and many other major U.S. cities to start ARC-like organizations. Other attendees founded or formed the first staff of national organizations such as Farm Sanctuary and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. Her leadership and activism in the Twin Cities was both a model and a motivator for animal activism across the U.S. when the American Animal Rights Movement was newly born. Vonnie, you made an awful/wonderful lot happen for animals; may the rest of us keep it going.”

Gary Francione, author with Anna Charlton, of Eat Like You Care: An Examination of the Morality of Eating Animals; Animals as Persons; Introduction to Animal Rights, and other books sent this tribute to Vonnie: “Vonnie was a great person. She not only embraced veganism and abolition fairly early on, but she also saw the connections between human rights and animal rights. She was a major force in animal rights even beyond Minnesota. She will be missed.”

To learn more about this exceptional woman and her fascinating life, read Vonnie’s article “Look How Far We’ve Come!” in the Winter 2011 30th Anniversary issue of ARC News and “History of an Activist.” Both articles are guaranteed to give you an appreciation for Vonnie’s groundwork that went into making ARC the strong activist organization it is today.

Growth. Possibility. Inspiration

Growth_Possibiliy_InspirationGrowth. Possibility. Inspiration. These are the words that most aptly describe ARC’s journey in 2013. As the oldest grass-roots animal rights group in the country, we’ve seen our cultural relationship to our treatment of animals shift and go through many stages and we’ve been there, helping to shape and move this process forward.

Please check out our colorful Annual Report to see how 2013 was an outstanding year in terms of reaching a record number of people with the message that animals matter for their own reasons.

Making Justice for Animals Even More Accessible

HFM_brochure_SPANISH_Page_1Our popular brochure “Have You Ever Stopped to Think About Them?” was designed to make our message of justice for animals accessible to as many people as possible. An excerpt reads: “There is a way to live that seeks to do no harm; it’s called veganism (vee-gun-ism). Vegan choices don’t contribute to the suffering and death of other animals, are much better for the planet, and help you stay healthy and happy.”

A recent study by the Humane Research Council looked at several pieces of literature from large animal advocacy groups and discovered that they were all written at a literacy rate of 11th grade or higher. But according to the U.S. Department of Education, only about 15% of the population reads at that level. So ARC set out to create a brochure at the 7th grade reading level that made the case for animal equality in simple terms so more people could receive our message in a way that works for them. We’re excited to announce that the brochure is now available for download in Spanish and French versions, with more versions in the works.