Apr 26, 2012
WSPA recently asked our supporters for help in urging Hawaii Legislators to support a bill (House Bill 2296) that would end the trade of bear gallbladders and bile and protect bears globally. This important bill successfully passed through the Hawaii Legislature on Apr. 23!
Bear bile, a digestive fluid extracted from bears’ gallbladders, is often used in Traditional Asian Medicines, as well as non-medical products such as wine and shampoo. Even though there are no wild bears in Hawaii, the state’s lack of restrictions indirectly catered to the high demand for bear bile around the world – driving poaching and trade, and undermining related bans in other U.S. states and other countries.
But, thanks to Born Free USA, WSPA and other animal welfare groups – as well as State Representative Jessica Wooley (D- Laie, Hauula, Kahaluu and Kaneoh) and Senator Clayton Hee (D-Kahuku, La'ie, Ka'a'awa, Kane'ohe) – the newly-passed bill makes it illegal to purchase, sell, transport or deliver bear gallbladders or bile.
Next Steps: The Governor’s Office
The legislation is now on its way to the Governor Abercrombie’s office, where it will await his signature to become law. This bill, once signed, will prevent not only native U.S. bear bile from making its way on to the market, but will also serve as a critical step in ending the global trade of bear bile.
Thanks to all of our supporters who helped advocate for this change!