West Hollywood Becomes First Fur-Free City in America

The City Council voted Monday night to ban the sale of clothing containing fur.
Councilman John D'Amico at the 1st Annual Diamonds Not Fur Gala To Benefit SPCALA in 2011.

West Hollywood made history when it became the first city in the nation to ban the sale of clothing containing fur in a unanimous vote by its city council Monday night.

“My colleagues are really wonderful, thoughtful, humane, socially compassionate legislators,” the ordinance’s sponsor, Councilman John D’Amico, tells the West Hollywood Patch after the vote. “I’m honored to work with them.”

The City Council passed the ban with a 5-0 vote in front of a packed house. More than 30 people spoke on the proposition with about 75% in favor of the law.

D’amico argued that the law was about the “impacts we have on the world. This is really an opportunity for our city to lead in a very specific and thoughtful way.”

The prohibition could go into effect as early as June 30, 2012 pending discussion with local businesses. While the ordinance doesn’t include furniture containing fur, the Council is considering the exemption of vintage and secondhand clothing from the ban, since those items do not involve the killing of a new animal.

As the ordinance stands now, individuals and businesses that don’t adhere to the ban would be subject to “sufficient” civil penalties by the city according to D’Amico.