Expand the Save Network
In The Save Movement we regularly bear witness of sad and frightened animals on transport trucks and at slaughterhouses, live markets, and factory farms. We encourage others to bear witness of the plight of farmed animals in their communities and to start a save group where you live.
One of our missions is to expand the existence of save groups and vigils into every community worldwide which have slaughterhouses, factory farms, enslaved mammal auction houses, or a route used by transport trucks. We agree with Paul McCartney: If slaughterhouses had glass walls, everybody would be vegan and an animal activist! We have thousands of members on facebook from across the globe. We welcome interest from individuals like you, and hope to inspire you to start a save group wherever you live to make slaughterhouses have glass walls as well as to show the peaceful and just alternatives: forever homes at farm sanctuaries and a just transition to a nonviolent, whole grain, plant based, that is – vegan – society.
We are here to assist you with your commitment to help save and rescue enslaved mammals and other animals. The Save Movement would like to play a supportive role should you require helpful tips, ideas, and material assistance. We would like to provide you with some basic tools to get started with a Save group in your area. Together, we can make a difference and help to close down all slaughterhouses defacing the Earth and expand the network of sanctuaries to cover the entire planet.
One of the key ways of encouraging people to fully identify with the plight of pigs, cows, chickens, turkeys, rabbits and other enslaved animals is to bear witness of their suffering.
Leo Tolstoy eloquently defines the duty to bear witness on the part of each of us in his book A Calendar of Wisdom:
“When the suffering of another creature causes you to feel pain, do not submit to the initial desire to flee from the suffering one, but on the contrary, come closer, as close as you can to him who suffers, and try to help him.”
It’s everyone’s responsibility to bear witness of the suffering of animals and to intervene to create a respectful, nonviolent vegan society. As painful as it may seem to initiate a campaign to bear witness, it is actually empowering when done as a group. The paradox of painful yet meaningful and empowering aspects of bearing witness was captured perfectly by Vivikananda in the nineteenth century:
“But my heart has grown much, much larger, and I have learnt to feel [the suffering of others]”
By collectively bearing witness and intervening on a large scale, the horror that we feel regarding the “animal emergency” involving billions of farmed animals and threats to wild species will be reversed as we move towards a critical mass which will enable us to turn the tide and create one big sanctuary on the entire Earth.
How to Get Started
You can start small. The first step is to begin with investigating what animal exploitation facilities exist in your area. Please feel free to contact us anytime to provide you with one-on-one tips and to see if we can help with any resources to get you started.
- Find out what slaughterhouses, stockyards, auctions, factory farms and other animal exploitation facilities are in your community. For example, in Canada you can find a complete listing of federally inspected slaughterhouse in Canada and Ontario provincially inspected slaughterhouses here: List of Federally Registered Meat Establishments and their Licensed Operators and Ontario Provincially Inspected Slaughterhouses. In the US there is The Final Nail and the Factory Farm Map.
- Gather information on the companies such as what types of animals they slaughter, how many each day; find out the animal transport routes through your area; the source of the animals; the environmental pollutants emitted from the facility; and whether there is a union representing the workers
- Realize you are not alone in your desire to help animals
- Find out who else cares in your community and reach out to them to join you in a collective effort
- Enlist help from your family and friends
- Arrange a potluck get together or meeting to discuss ideas, goals, strategies and tactics, and plans
- Meet with other animals groups in your area who share your interests in helping animals and ask for their support in organizing initiatives and getting the word out
- Set up a website and social media.
- Post this information on a website WordPress.com offers free websites
- Start a Facebook group and invite people who also care about the plight of animals in your community
- Bear witness together of the suffering of the animals
- Work toward holding vigils to bear witness as a group in high traffic areas near or at the facilities you wish the public to know about
- Take photos and videos and commission artworks in order to “make slaughterhouses have glass walls”
- Bring a clipboard and pen to record truck license plates, ID numbers, time of day, temperature, and any possible violations. You can download sample information sheets here: Pig Transport Observation Sheets
Other Helpful Steps and Tactics
- Find out what city or state councillors/representatives in your area are animal friendly and invite them to your events
- Table at a variety of events as a way of networking face-to-face with others who care.
- Organize fundraising events such as bake sales, dinners with speakers, and garage sales for the cause
- Visit and support local animal sanctuaries
- Plan special events in your area at or near the slaughterhouse or stockyards.
- Increase participation at vigils by inviting special guests. For example, Marc Bekoff attended a Toronto Pig Save vigil when he was in town and wrote about it: Babe, Lettuce, and Tomato: You Want a What?
- ask other groups to co-sponsor a vigil and other events. For instance, the Toronto Vegetarian Meet-up group made a vigil their meet-up event in December 2011, making it Toronto Pig Save’s largest vigil
- organize an art show with animal rights artists as a way of making slaughterhouses have glass walls
- contact local media with your events and get the word out with posters
- approach local businesses to raise initial funding for brochures, posters, and artworks.
A Love-based, Gandhian and Pro-worker Approach
Toronto Pig Save tries to use a positive, love-based, Gandhian approach and is pro-labour. We speak to people as equals with no judgment. It’s fulfilling and effective. Such positive approaches tend to produce ripple effects in the public and in worker responses. Other side benefits are: there is less conflict and activist burnout.
Work cooperatively with ALL involved with the goal of creating a caring and environmentally-friendly society and a healthy vegan way of life.
With Toronto Pig Save holding three vigils per week, using a negative, conflict-based approach is not sustainable, which would quickly lead to activist burn-out.
Be positive. Have signs which are positive. Smile when possible. Try to be non-reactive and nonjudgmental. For example, Toronto Pig Save uses big reddish-pink hearts with Pig Save written on them, we have “Love and kindness for Pigs” signs, “Where has our empathy gone?” sign, and a series of “Why Love One But Eat the Other” signs with our website and other info. We can provide your group with these and your contact info.
This approach works because it’s inspiring, energizing and helps your organization grow.
For more information or inquiries about The Save Movement, please use the contact options below.