Dear ASI friend,

Welcome to ASI’s first newsletter of 2022. I am sure that this year is going to be full of fascinating moments in human-animal relationships, including some of ASI’s very own exciting news for this year, too.

I am excited to share with you that, with your help, we will release special issues of our two managed publications, Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science (JAAWS) and Society & Animals. The JAAWS issue will focus on how global issues such as pandemics, climate change, and other natural disasters affect human-animal relationships. The special issue of Society and Animals will focus on the welfare and public health implications of outdoor community cats. We look forward to releasing our latest book from the Brill Human-Animal Studies book series, The Relational Horse: How Frameworks of Communication, Care, Politics, and Power Reveal and Conceal Equine Selves. 

Given the success of online programming in 2021, we are looking forward to hosting more virtual events in 2022 in order to continue facilitating deep discussions on a range of HAS topics.

We've been hard at work to bring you a new and improved website! You will find that not only does our website have a fresh new look, but there's also new tools and key resources that Human-Animal Studies scholars, practitioners, and supporters can use on a daily basis.

Finally, we have welcomed a new cohort of Spring Interns who have joined the ASI team for the spring semester. We are excited to work together with each one of them as we move the ASI vision forward.
Thank you for your continued support and for believing in our work to create safer and more compassionate communities. 
Executive Director
ASI Welcomes Laura-Jane Sheridan to the Board of Directors

ASI is pleased to announce the election of Laura-Jane Sheridan to its Board of Directors. Laura-Jane Sheridan holds a Masters in Anthrozoology from the University of Exeter, with a specialism in compassion fatigue in animal care. She has extensive experience in communications, fundraising and marketing across the nonprofit sector and delivers strategic fundraising support to the sector through her roles as Head of Philanthropy and as Director of Cruff Consulting Ltd. She takes pride in supporting charitable organisations to achieve financial growth and deliver measurable, sustainable impact through stakeholder engagement. She is experienced in setting and delivering organisational strategy and policy to achieve long term, sustainable income growth and she is skilled in championing and promoting high-level support of the third sector to inspire a range of stakeholders throughout the UK and internationally.

She holds relationships with key stakeholders throughout the scientific community through her role as Chair of the Board of Animal Free Research UK – the country’s leading charity in innovating animal replacement technologies in medical research. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management and, in her spare time, volunteers as a Companion Animal Care Assistant with The Cinnamon Trust, supporting vulnerable people with care of their beloved animals.
Laura-Jane is based in Edinburgh, Scotland, where she is owned by two very fluffy Ragdoll cats, Crumble and Puff.
ASI Seeks News Board Members

Do you want to help create a more compassionate world? Would you like to see evidence-based research used to strengthen human-animal relationships? If you do, you may be a match for ASI’s open board member positions. Whether you have experience working with a hands-on board or are thinking about joining a board for the first time, this may be the right opportunity for you. Read more about what the position entails and how to apply here.
Society & Animals

The latest Society & Animals, Volume 30, Issue 2 is now available.

Below is a selection of articles from this issue:

To learn see the latest issue, advanced publications, or to learn more about the journal, follow this link to the Brill website.

You may also search abstracts and full articles, through ASI’s searchable Digital Archive.
The Policy Corner
Author Anna Balser- ASI Policy Volunteer
Welcome to another year of the Policy Corner! This year I will reflect on new policy themes and follow up on the items you see below.

A major item to watch this year is Senator Cory Booker’s Farm System Reform Act of 2021. It is a reintroduction of legislation first introduced in 2019 that aims to restructure our food system and break up the monopolies that hold so much power in the animal agriculture industry at present. The bill covers a lot of ground, but an item that would quickly and materially impact the lives of farmed animals is the moratorium on CAFOs (Confined Animal Feeding Operations). Any new CAFOs, plus the expansion of existing facilities, would be banned under the Act. 

The bill has new support from both animal protection and farmer advocacy groups, according to Booker, and with the Covid-19 pandemic illuminating many of the shortcomings of our current food system, this bill might be in a better position to stay alive in 2022. The frank acknowledgement of the corporate power that controls the regulation of animal agriculture is encouraging to see–this is a theme I would like to continue to explore in the Policy Corner this year. 

What else is going on in the policy world?

Gray wolves have been re-listed as endangered in most US states following a ruling from a federal judge in February. This decision restores their status after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service delisted the wolves in late 2020. This decision, however, excludes the gray wolf population in the Northern Rocky Mountains. This population is still at risk of being killed by hunters and ranchers in states like Idaho and Washington, where there has been a great deal of tension between humans and wolves. The complex landscape of gray wolf policies and protections could be its own corner, and we will revisit any changes in the Northern Rocky Mountain states as the year goes on. It seems clear that a resolution to this protracted interspecies conflict will require more than a status change for wolves. The ruling linked above also brings up questions about the integrity of the argument and research that supported the de-listing of gray wolves in the first place–I encourage you to give it a read! 

IP13 in Oregon - This activist-led ballot initiative seeks to amend animal cruelty and neglect laws that currently exclude farmed animals and common hunting practices. IP13 is currently in the signature-gathering phase in order to get a spot on the ballot in 2022. By reframing artificial insemination and slaughter as sexual assault and killing, the petition aims to functionally eradicate animal farming and hunting in Oregon, although it leaves the particulars of that transition for the state to figure out. Special interest farming and hunting groups are taking it seriously enough to inform their members about it, but the petition has not garnered support from independent animal advocacy groups as of now. 

Chances of success seem slim, but if this petition gains the signatures needed to get on the ballot in 2022 it would be historic. This initiative reframes the way the public may think about animal farming and hunting. It pushes beyond incremental changes on farms and draws attention to the fact that existing animal protection laws exclude farmed animals and animals who are legally hunted. It’s also a straightforward example of (attempted) policymaking as applied ethics–another theme I will revisit over the year. 

Thanks for reading! 

About Anna
Anna holds an MS in Anthrozoology from Canisius College, where she primarily focused her studies on sanctuary regulation, public policy, and animal ethics. After living on the west coast for the past seven years, Anna recently relocated to upstate New York, where she is the Education Manager at Woodstock Farm Sanctuary. She loves helping people question their assumptions about farmed animals and think deeply about interspecies relationships, always with the goal of building a more compassionate world. She is thrilled to be working on the Policy Corner this year! 

ASI has signed-on to a letter to Congress that calls for an urgent increase in funding for endangered species in the FY2023. At the end of 2021, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) removed 22 animals and one plant from the endangered species list as a result of extinction. In an attempt to combat the loss of any further species to extinction, this letter calls for an urgent budget increase for the significantly underfunded Endangered Species Act which currently protects over 1,600 species. To meet the protection needs of our endangered animals and plants, the USFWS requires a budget of $694.8 million for FY2023.

This budget request proposes the distribution of funds across five programs that will see more species listed under the Endangered Species Act; the implementation of greater recovery actions; planning and consultation to ensure species receive fundamental protection amongst infrastructure and development; the conservation and restoration of species by improving their habitat and removing threats; and for collaborative work across public and private lands as a way to protect our natural heritage. This proposed funding package will provide what’s truly required to meet the needs of our most imperiled animals and plants and ensure that the USFWS finally has sufficient funds to protect all species at risk of extinction.

ASI Spring Interns

Let's take a moment to welcome and celebrate our spring interns.
Lisa Burnell - Communications Internship

Lisa Burnell is a South African photographer and storyteller with a history of working in the nonprofit sector. Her work focuses on using visual and written media for research, cultural investigation and advocacy into socio-economic and urban issues. She is a Social Science graduate with a double major in Sociology and Anthropology, and is currently completing a Master’s in Women’s and Gender Studies through the University of the Western Cape (UWC) in Cape Town. Lisa is particularly interested in multispecies interactions and documenting humans’ complex relationship with animals and the environment; her current research explores ecocritical and posthumanist discourses and experiences of pitbull-type dogs in postcolonial and postapartheid South Africa.

Lisa lives with pitbull and lockdown co-worker, Kenji, who entered her life in a way that could only have been fate. Together they foster puppies through a local shelter who Kenji raises to be gentle, loving and kind as he shows them how to break stigma. Lisa hopes to find ways to challenge pitbull-breed policy and legislation so that someday she and Kenji will be able to explore the world together
Meghan DeLuca - Policy Internship

Meghan DeLuca is a 4th-year student at Iona College in New Rochelle, New York. She commutes from Yonkers, New York and is currently majoring in Criminal Justice with a minor in Pre-Law. She is simultaneously working towards a Masters degree in Criminal Justice through an advanced program that her school offers. She hopes to attend law school in the near future as well, where she can pursue her passion for advocacy and defending people’s rights.  

Meghan is interested in animal and environmental rights, and the crucial yet often overlooked relationship between animals and people. She has one 4-year-old tabby cat, Luna, whom she adores, and several (dog) nieces and nephews. Meghan is thrilled to be interning for ASI for the spring semester, and she is even more thrilled to be researching how to make a difference in the policy-making space as it pertains to animals and the environment. 
Taylor Newsome
Taylor Newsome - Policy Internship

My name is Taylor Newsome. I am 21 years old, currently completing my senior year at Iona College, in New Rochelle, New York. I am in a 5-year program as well, graduating in May 2023 with my Masters in Criminal Justice. I am in Phi Sigma Sigma, a sorority organization, with the mission of inspiring the personal development of each person and to perpetuate the advancement of womanhood, which means so much to me. I am also a part of the criminal justice club, which gives students the chance to meet with retired officers, and officers currently in the field to better our knowledge of the system entirely. While completing my degree, I was given the opportunity to also intern at the New Jersey Office of Attorney Generals which was extremely cool. Although my past has involved violent crimes against people, I have always been an animal lover since I can remember, owning birds, cats and dogs my whole life. I have become recently interested in nonprofit organizations that are dedicated to bettering lives not only for people and minorities, but animals as well, hence why ASI has been so enjoyable!  
While finishing school, enjoying this internship, and being a part of a few clubs, I babysit a family friend a few days a week. I also love hanging out with my roommates who are now my best friends! I live with my cute shiranian Minnie, who is mine and my mom's best friend. I can't wait to see what the future holds! 
Samantha Pertuit - Society & Animals Journal Internship

Samantha Pertuit is an aspiring editor with a focus on companion animals and nonprofit work. She is an English graduate with a focus on Language and Literature, as well as minors in French and Publishing Studies. She is currently working towards a Master's in English in the Publishing Studies field through Southeastern Louisiana University (SELU) in Hammond, Louisiana, where she is also the Editorial Assistant to Nineteenth Century Studies. Samantha hopes to learn more on the editing process as well as broaden her horizons in the different fields of animal studies.

Samantha currently resides in Louisiana with her 16 companion animals - 10 cats and 6 dogs. When she is not focusing on school or journals, she is volunteering for local nonprofit rescues or making dogs feel their best as a dog groomer. 

ASI Development Internship Opportunity
The Development Intern will work closely with the Executive Director to grow and expand the work of the organization. This position offers a unique opportunity to gain experience in the human-animal studies field while learning about nonprofit development and marketing. 

Responsibilities include:
  • Conduct research on potential donors, strategic partners, markets, and industries.
  • Support grant application processes.
  • Draft correspondence, reports, proposals, and donor appeals.
  • Assist with mailings and special projects as needed.
  • Create thank you letters and other donor correspondence.
  • Support fundraising efforts via social media.
  • Affinity for animal protection.
  • Strong writing and research skills.
  • Graphic skills such as Canva strongly desired.
  • Detail oriented and ability to prioritize.
  • Ability to multi-task and work independently.
  • Strong interpersonal skills.

This position is 100% remote and is offered on a rolling basis. To apply, please send your resume to Ivy Collier.


Become a part of the ASI community by joining as a Scholar, Student, or Professional Member to take advantage of member benefits like discounts to S&A and JAAWS and more. Your membership today will help create safer and more compassionate communities tomorrow.

Human-Animal Studies Facebook Group

The ASI-sponsored Facebook group, Human-Animal Studies, is making waves! Now with over 2,500 members, the group has become a vibrant and active community which regularly has over ten posts a day from scholars, students, and others interested in Human-Animal Studies. To stay up to speed on what’s going on in HAS the field daily, sign up here.
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