Please note: weekday morning vigils usually start at 7 or 7:30 am (so please scroll up on calendar to early morning hours). Also, please join our  “Toronto Pig Save weekly vigils to bear witness” events page on Facebook here.

Photo f a sad and frightened pig taken at a Toronto Pig Save vigil in 2012.

Photo of a sad and frightened pig taken at a Toronto Pig Save vigil in 2012.

Please join Toronto Pig Save’s weekly vigils to bear witness on Facebook or if you are not on FB please email us at torontopigsave@gmail.com  and we’ll add you to our weekly email list.

We hold three vigils a week throughout the year. We encourage everyone to bring a camera and share the footage you take with your friends and family.

TO get a sense of what we do at our vigils, please watch 3-minute short video Vegan BLT Giveaway and Pig Save: Bearing Witness.

Where are the vigils?

* On Mondays, 7-9 am we are generally at Toronto Cow Save vigils at “St. Helen’s” and “Ryding-Regency Meat Packers” cow slaughterhouse, one block northwest of St. Clair and Keele.

* During Sundays, we generally are at 677 Wellington St. West (the unloading area)  1-3 pm on the first two Sunday’s of the month and then leafleting at Dundas Square (Dundas and Yonge) 1-3 on the last two Sundays of the month.

* One morning during the weekday we are at Lakeshore and Strachan – across from the Exhibition’s Prince’s Gates – sometimes our vigils are in the late afternoon so please join our FB group or email list to check times and places.

Understanding the significance of bearing witness:

“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 her who suffers, and try to help her.”
-Leo Tolstoy, A Calendar of Wisdom

“Yes, it is a hard thing to witness. It will stay with you forever. Keep in mind that every action has a reaction. This experience will enable you to speak (with credibility) for these departed souls. They did not die in vain. You are now part of their life and they are part of your life. Because you were there for them they now have a voice through you.”
-Ric O’Barry, former “Flipper” dolphin trainer turned dolphin rescuer featured in Academy Award-winning documentary The Cove

“Help me, she says, are you here to help me? I cannot help you, he says. We are both helpless. I would free you if I could. But my kind will never be free, she says. Don’t give up hope, he says. We will fight for you, we are here for you, we must make people understand. Bless the witness bearers, for they will help bring about change.”
-Sherry of Ruby Ranch Pig Sanctuary

* To learn more about why we bear witness, please read  “Bearing Witness”, a blog about Toronto Pig Save vigils and Jo-Anne McArthur’s indelible animal photography around the world for the We Animals project.

* Download our observation sheet which details any possible violations of animal cruelty laws and codes. Thank you Kaitlyn Mitchell and Natalie Smith for providing Toronto Pig Save with an overview of legislation and codes related to addressing animal cruelty in transport, unloading, and slaughterhouses and Tracy for putting together observation charts.

On August 18, 2011, five members of Toronto Pig Save bore witness and protested on “pig island” – a traffic island at Lakeshore and Strachan where transport trucks carry hot, dehydrated and often scared and scarred pigs to Quality Meat Packers slaughterhouse. Each pig in the transport trucks is an individual with his or her own personality just like you and me and dogs and other companion animals you are familiar with. We need your help in our weekly protests. Join us and bear witness and protest the slaughter of 6-7,000 pigs each day at Quality Meat Packers’ slaughterhouse.

This video footage shows hot, dehydrated and – in some cases – injured pigs waiting in a transport truck in the hot sun at 4 pm on Tuesday, July 12, 2011 at Toronto’s Quality Meat Packers.

Earlier, at 2 pm, Teresa Ascencao,  a local resident witnessed about 10 trucks waiting in line at Quality Meat Packers, including one truck with several pigs having bleeding snoots (Teresa thinks it’s because they were pushing through the opening for air!). She then bravely ran into the plant and demanded to see the plant manager and asked them to have empathy for the pigs. She was told to leave.

It is really sad to see the pigs’ conditions, but this is probably typical on extremely hot days. What people have suggested is that we continue to bear witness and publicize their suffering. The World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA) has set up a media alert and a form letter you can send to your MP, but please personalize the letter and refer to this case of July 12  and the video above. When you bear witness at 677 Wellington St. W., always bring a camera and/or video camera to document any the general abuses and torturous conditions the pigs suffer including the use of electric prods to unload the trucks.

To unload the pigs, truckers use paddles and electric prods, poking these into the trucks or taking these dangerous weapons inside the trucks. The truckers and the workers inside the pen and kill area use electric prods – not because they want to torture these gentle giant pigs – but because it speeds up the unloading and corralling process and so adds to the profit margin. People simply need to stop supporting this system of cruelty by shifting their diets away from fatty “pork” to more ethical, environmentally sound, and healthy vegan, organic and local food systems.

* * *

Thursday, July 21, 2011 during Toronto’s heat wave: Pigs in transport trucks on the way to Quality Meat Packers, Lakeshore and Strachan in Toronto.   Temperature outside truck was 38C plus humidity. The first pig has a bruised and bleeding face – including snout. Many pigs panting, having a hard time breathing.

* *

*

Gwen’s Vigil

I have been holding a one-woman, Sunday vigil (begun on Dec. 13, 2009) for just over one year at what I call the Toronto Slaughter House. Its actual name is Toronto Abattoirs Ltd., with “Quality” Meat Packers Ltd. alongside it off Tecumseth St. The shockingly barbaric and primitive holding-compound (as apt a word as I can find) where the pigs are held overnight, is at the end of two driveways off Wellington St. It is at this latter location where I first began this project.

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Let me just say that for me, the French word “abattoire”, does not do “justice” to what goes on there, because in my opinion, there is neither justice nor mercy where the animals are concerned. And the word “slaughter” suggests violent killing on a massive scale. Given there are one hundred and sixty-four, three-tiered transport trucks making weekly “deliveries” (taken from the Latin word “deliberare”, meaning ironically, to liberate, to set free), the name slaughter house, calls this very dark and heavily guarded place (with fifteen hundred employees) for what it truly is, a house of killing for which I believe we all are to whatever degree, responsible.

My vigil takes various forms but mostly it entails meeting the truckers as they arrive, witnessing the unloading of the females of the pig species, (called sows by some, who I call my soul friends and my tribe) and then seeing the truckers (who have no option but to pass right by me, my conscience and I hope and I know, in some cases, theirs) turn out of the driveway on route to wherever home is, to sometimes far-enough-away parts of Ontario.

Most of the time, I just stand there, in whatever kind of weather, for as long as I can last, sometimes three hours… more or less, with both hands over my heart. I used to only use one hand but Harold Brown (a former beef farmer and founder of Farmkind, and a subject of the documentary film ‘Peaceable Kingdom: The Journey Home’) suggested two hands would be more powerful…so that is what I do. I send as much love and compassion as I can muster, amidst the beatings of the sows and their subsequent screams, (which I never think can get worse but do),and the shouting of some of the truckers… as in: “Move, you stupid f’ing bitch(es)” (similar language with accompanying rage that at times gets sent my way as well), with only a fine, but critical legal line of fear of consequences, separating the treatment of the pigs and the treatment of me, a line that has all too often gotten blurred throughout human history, resulting in genocide and atrocities of one kind or another. That we seem to think we human animals are special in some way and will therefore be spared the brutality we have not spared others of our species and certainly not these remarkably intelligent, non-human animals is, in my opinion, a form of insanity.

And criminals, at least some, however hardened we judge them or ourselves to be, are sometimes offered, on the eve of their executions or we, in our final moments, last rites and perhaps even a special last meal; whereas these sows, representing the female principle of life, have never had any rights…first or last or in-between or maybe just the barest minimum of rights with no or next-to-no enforcement of those rights. They have been deprived of everything that might reflect on them as being the species they are, even to the point of their conception (“con” meaning “with”) achieved today through “artificial insemination” which without consent, is merely technical language for licensed rape.

But I have digressed.

I don’t always or only stand in the same place. I have had deeply meaningful, if not at times, intense interaction with the truckers, “super” visors, security, police, City of Toronto public workers (who share the same driveway), residents from the area, one of the care-takers of the numerous feral cats having sought refuge nearby, passers-by and even on one occasion, a waiter from a nearby restaurant. I’ve heard personal stories and extended hugs to someone who came across me and was moved to tears by what I was doing, but moreover through hearing the cries of pain and terror, of the animals themselves. I have had a slaughterhouse worker scream at me: “Who are you…some stupid, f’ing, psycho bitch?” only to very quietly say moments later: “I have nightmares you know…we all do”.

I have seen the inside of the holding area, the ugly red welts and deep gashes near sensitive parts of the animals’ bodies, their precious behinds fire-engine red and sore. I have seen the pile-up of bodies of those who didn’t survive transport, who I originally hoped might have found some modicum of comfort with each other until the realization set in that they were dead. I’ve run up one of the ladders attached to the holding compound and with my head stuck in a truck, screamed for leniency regarding the severity of the beatings. On at least a few occasions, I’ve lost my composure and done my own fair share of screaming, (I am no saint) raising my voice not in anger but as an appeal for humanity, theirs and mine.

I’ve planted a lot of seeds (maybe I, too, am becoming one such seed). As long as I continue to get feedback, sometimes only in the most elusive of ways,  and sometimes directly in the form of overt rage or an unexpected kindness (that has told me there is some understanding on the part of a few, what my purpose for being there is), I am committed to showing up, opening my heart more fully, fine-tuning my responses, trusting that this kind of change I am aiming for, beginning with myself, then through example and conscious presence, affecting outside change, one person at a time, within one system of exploitation and fear at a time, perhaps saving one animal at a time, will take just that…time. The Berlin Wall, after all, finally did come down and when it did, it happened virtually overnight.

There is so much more I could say but I would like to finish with why I started this project in the first place. It is a critical piece of the whole. Please stay with me for just a little longer…if you can.

In 2005, I survived a plane crash. As I believed myself to be seconds away from death, my life flashed before me with waves of resultant feelings. I recalled the cruelty and violence and abuse of my childhood and how hard it was, the struggle to overcome its effects. I felt a deep sadness about this but I also felt enormous appreciation for the pinpoints of quality and light in my life that I had been able to experience and actively create, much of it through the gift of life-long therapy of one kind or another. But what I thought would be my last thoughts, were thoughts about the animals and feelings of profound loss that my life was ending without having done enough on their behalf. Compared to them I had had so much.

Some of what happened during my childhood, took place on a relative’s farm where there were domestic animals, farm animals and two long-houses filled with caged mink. The brutality I witnessed, perpetrated on all the animals and that was held over my head as a threat to remain silent about what was being done to me, left me in a state of devastation. I did what I could to try to speak for them at that time, but it was a lose/lose proposition, alone with no support or protection for myself as well.

Many years later the despair of my childhood inevitably came to a head. At forty years of age, suicide had been a long time coming, albeit unsuccessful. But at least I had been able to say, “Enough!” to the psychological pain that, despite my best efforts to assuage, had become unbearable. That afternoon on the plane, a decade later, at the age of fifty, I felt for all the animals, who were never able to say and still cannot say, “Enough”; who had no recourse then, and all these years later, continue to have no recourse whatsoever in ending their own suffering. Having survived also the plane crash, something tipped the scales.  The terror of getting directly and deeply involved with anything that might touch upon that same degree of devastation and loss of faith in humanity and myself ever again, weighed in as less significant than my deepest longing for the urgent alleviation of animals’ suffering. Whereas before, my question had been, “Why me?” it became, “Why not me?” and then, “Who better than me?”

Thus began my journey with pigs and the beginning of my true sanity and the making of amends for the gift of life I have that billions of them have yet to know.

Gwen Dunlop is a raw vegan activist

72 Responses to “Events: Bear witness at vigils”


  1. Gwen, I am drowing in tears. Your beautiful gesture, (actually, it is so much more than just a gesture) is tearing at my heart. You are so brave, to stand there, bearing witness to this daily assault on innocent animals. I want to come and stand with you. I want dozens, hundreds, to come and stand with you. I don’t think I could listen to the screams for very long, but it’s nothing compared to what they have to endure. Gwen, can you contact me, I want to help.
    Sherry


  2. Gwen,

    I have no idea where to begin.
    From what I just read, I have learned that there ARE still wonderful remarkable people still out there, like yourself. You have so much compassion and dedication that it is amost overwhelming. In a VERY good way. This brought me to tears, as anything that involves animals suffering for humans selfish meaningless use. I would give anything to stand right there along side you. I am beyond sad and hurt when I think about all of the pain and suffering that all animals suffer. When I know about someone like you and as wonderful as you are is out there fighting and enduring the emotional pain of this task, it leaves me feeling hopeful. I am so sorry that people said those mean things to you. You know that they are garbage as much as I do. Gwen, even though we have never met, I admire you so much and I would love to call you a friend.
    YOU ARE AMAZING.

    Btw my name is Ana and I’m 17 years old.
    Check out my animal rights 1 girl campaign.
    Youtube.com/AnimalPeaceProject
    Twitter.com/PAPcampaign
    Facebook.com- Anastasia Briana (my project animal peace facebook)

  3. susan morris Says:

    You are a brave, kind women & I thank you for being there for these souls. I agree with Sherry, we must plan something & come out to stand shoulder to shoulder with you.
    Thank you for what you are doing….

    1. sharon DiGenova Says:

      I’ll be there shouldering with you

  4. Lindsay Says:

    First of all, I wish to echo the sentiments of the posters above. Thank you for being strong enough to take on this part of the fight.
    Secondly, the part that sticks in my mind about your story is the worker who admitted having nightmares. I wonder if these people realize they deserve worse than smthg that ends as soon as they wake up? They could walk away, choose not to do that for a living, but there they are…

    1. David Regan Says:

      Slaughterhouse employees are no more culpable for the violence they do than supermarket employees, or restaurant employees, or anyone who uses animal products. I.e. our neighbours, friends, family members. They, too, could walk away, but there they are, keeping slaughterhouses in business — and comfortably removed from the consequences of their consumer choices. Before lashing out at slaughterhouse employees, I think we should look closer to home — and we should keep in mind that these employees often do not, in fact, have a plethora of employment options available to them.

  5. Margaret Sheridan Says:

    God bless you Gwen. Can’t imagine the pain you witness every day. It’s hard to believe that people are still willing to let this go on, given that it’s pretty well public knowledge. All part of the selfish culture we live in and their inability to give up meat. How can that meat give sustenance when it is tainted with such sadness.

  6. Marie-Lynn Says:

    Gwen, I too was moved to tears by your account. I know where that slaughterhouse is. I now live north of TO or I would offer to join you. Have been vegetarian (currently almost vegan)for 35 yrs and am glad that vegetarianism seems to be on the increase. But not fast enough, sadly, and I doubt we’ll ever make a serious dent in our sicko carnivorous culture that turns a blind eye to how its food is produced. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you’re doing.

  7. june taylor Says:

    Tears of sadness..Tears of joy…I am numb…we are “kindred spirits” for all animals on their plight to be as intended on Earth: free…we will be the voices for the “defenseless”…I have “hope” for “change”…xo

  8. Kirsten Dulmage Says:

    Gwen

    As I read your story…the tears are present. Your are a strong powerful, kind, women…the words are endless. I would love to join you on your visits if you still are doing them. I always want to do more. You have inspired me…and it feels good to hear stories like yours…thankyou for sharing your life.
    Kirsten

  9. Barry Bedford Says:

    Gwe, I commend you for having the ability to do what so few of us can. I am a vegetarian but do not believe I could stand outside the slaughterhouse knowing what is going on inside. I admit to that cowardice on my part. I have so much respect for you. You are an incredible woman. If I can be of any assistance to you in this, please do not hesitate to contact me. I live east of the city but will assist in any way possible. Again, you are remarkable.

  10. Vanessa Says:

    Bless your soul, Gwen. Bless the souls of the countless animals that you stand vigil for.
    Please let me know if you want company. I don’t know how much I could endure, but I know it is nothing compared to what the pigs have to – what you have had to.


    1. Hi Vanessa, Please email us at the Contact Us page.
      Cheers,
      Anita

  11. Kelly Says:

    I want to join you. How can I contact you?

  12. Laura Says:

    You’re a true giver to these beautiful beings. It’s wonderful to know that amidst all that brutal mysogyny you’re there to stand witness for them at the end.

    If you ever need to plug in after all that giving–we’ll get a vegan gal pal dinner together!!! 🙂

  13. Caroline Says:

    Gwen, I need to join you the soonest. Let me know how to get in touch with you..

    Thanks in advance


    1. Hi Caroline, Please email me at the Contact Us page.
      Cheers,
      Anita

  14. Caitlin Black Says:

    Thank you for your efforts. This is a wonderful statement to be making.

  15. Lynne Says:

    I really admire your bravery in facing such horror to try to save these beautiful creatures from the terrible suffering they endure. The height of human selfishness is hacking animals to death because you enjoy the taste of their flesh.

  16. Sue Coe Says:

    Gwen, witnessing without power, as you are doing, creates the power to change everything. People say they do not want to go into a slaughterhouse or see how food gets to their plate, because ‘they cannot change anything’ and that is the problem. Just to put yourself in that position of witnessing the end of these beautiful and intelligent and curious creatures lives, changes those workers, who whip and electrocute the sows into the moving into the slaughterhouse. It changes the dynamic and the power relationship of those men, it exposes the normalcy and societal acceptance of mass murder. It provides an outlet for all the passers by, who know this is wrong and want to communicate with another about it. And who knows? some of the sows may see you, and feel a moment of safety.

  17. Krissa Dutton-Schandelmaier Says:

    Oh, Gwen…. I have been sitting here staring at my computer screen, writing what turns out to be not nearly what I want to say, erasing it, staring over, erasing…. If I lived near you I would definitely join you, but I don’t live near you. However, I am going to find out if there are any slaughterhouses near where I live (Berlin, Germany – I am sure there are) and I am going to have my own vigil. My husband is German and I’m American so I will have to get him to come with me in case there’s problems, but I am sure he will. I have no idea how I will get through it, but knowing that you are doing this …. words just fail me. I do meditations every day and I am going to include you and those who you stand vigil for. Your example has deeply, deeply touched me.

    1. Krissa Says:

      As it turns out, for too many reasons to list here, I will not be able to hold vigil at a slaughterhouse, however Berlin is the capital of ‘animal’ research in the EU and I most certainly am going to hold vigil outside whatever lab/s I can find. There are many. It won’t be hard. Thank you for your example. Today, I dedicated my entire meditations to you and those you hold vigil for. I will always remember you, them and what you are doing – and what they are enduring.

  18. Jenny Copley-Forster Says:

    Gwen you are an inspiration. Thank you for your courage and for being there for the pigs. I inspected abattoirs for many years as an Animal Welfare Inspector and my heart breaks every day thinking about what happens to pigs the world over. You will be in my daily prayers and thoughts from now on. God bless you and your work!

  19. zelda nista Says:

    I’m always walking with my dog Z for public awareness against Breed Specific Legislation in Toronto. If I see you we will stop for a while & join you. A great thing you are doing! I think more may join if they knew you were out there.

  20. Evva Says:

    Gwen… I’m somewhat at a loss for words. What a beautiful thing you are doing. I’d love to join you but I don’t think I could handle all the sounds of the torture. I’d end up in jail. As in, I’d do more than I “legally” can to harm the process.
    I hope the animals can at least somehow feel your love.

  21. Christine Lever Says:

    Hello Gwen,

    I’ve listed the contact details for Quality Meats on my FB page and have asked people to call them and tell them (politely) how they feel; how pigs feel pain, fear, etc. I think we should work together to find out a list of companies that Quality supplies and contact them. We have to make all concerned realized that this is not acceptable on so many levels. If they feel that it’s hitting their bottom line, they’ll listen.

    I’m going to look for contact details for Temple Grandin. A big name with big credentials might do something to help the situation.

    There is no need for any of this to continue. Appalling.

    A friend shared your blog post with me. I’ll do everything I can to help you. Please feel free to contact me at my email address.

    Christine


    1. Thanks Christine. Please join our FB group too: listed as Toronto Pig Save.

  22. Angela Salewsky Says:

    Hi Gwen,

    Are you still doing this vigil? I’m sure we could organize a group to also participate and create awareness and possibly get some media coverage.

  23. Laura Says:

    Gwen,

    Thank you so much for your compassion and courage. I have been blessed to care for two elder big pigs, whom I rescued as piglets. Please know that you are supported and loved for your devotion, empathy, and passion.
    Laura, Keagan, and Sebastian

  24. Campbellina Says:

    I saw a pig truck on the highway into the city today and felt distressed because I didn’t know – only suspected – what was about to happen to the creatures whose kin I’d admired at Riverdale Farm only a few days ago… You have confirmed for me what lies in store for them and now that I really know, I can’t pretend I don’t. We do eat meat in our family, but I am going to research where it comes from (and how the animals were treated) before buying again. You sound like such a loving person to take up this cause and I just wanted to ‘drop in’ to say as much.

    Thank you,
    Campbellina

  25. Taya C Says:

    Absolutely amazing!

    I walk by there from Liberty Village to get to work and it’s brought me to tears so many mornings. There’s such a feeling of hopelessness around it so to read that someone is taking such a stand is incredible. If there is anything I can do to help you please let me know.


    1. Hi Taya,

      Peta is organizing a protest at Quality Meat Packers on Tuesday June 21 from 11:45 to 1 pm at 2 Tecumseh. Hope you can make it. The FB invite page is here:

      http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=189446081103087

      All the best, Anita cell: 416-825-6080

  26. Maria Says:

    I live in the area – and actually on my way home from work happen to drive along side the truck that is on it’s way there – it breaks my heart as I drive right beside these poor animals – not knowing what is going through their mind – I think to myself “do they know what’s going on” – I take my dog to the park across the street and my heart breaks as I see these trucks roll in – I would like to help out in any way that I can

    You are an amazing woman for taking such a stand!

  27. Evva Says:

    http://www.petakillsanimals.com/

    Animal lovers worldwide now have access to more than a decade’s worth of evidence showing that People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) kills thousands of defenseless pets at its Virginia headquarters. Since 1998, PETA has opted to “put down” 25,840 adoptable dogs, cats, puppies, and kittens instead of finding them “forever homes.”

    PETA’s “Animal Record” report for 2010, which the animal rights group itself filed with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, shows that PETA employees killed 94 percent of the dogs and cats in their care last year. During all of 2010, PETA found adoptive homes for just 44 pets.

    Just 44 dogs and cats—out of the 2,345 PETA took in. Those numbers are abysmal, and they and offer little hope for homeless animals to escape perishing on PETA’s version of “death row.”


    1. Thank you Louise for your thoughtful response. The above PETA attack looks like part of a smear campaign and, yes, front groups are set up/ astroturf and others by PR companies hired by exploitative industries. The comment above from Evva makes no mention of the millions of pigs killed at slaughterhouses (trying to deflect from the focus of our group) and what all of us can do through advocacy and other activities to contribute to a more humane and compassionate world through our diet.

    2. Evva Says:

      all i did was share a link and an excerpt from that link…. no attack… no personal comments… just the facts on peta as that site sees them.


    3. Is this an industry website, posing as a site with “facts”? If you scroll down that website it smears the celebrities that support PETA’s work,etc. Perhaps we can do an expose of this website you provided and see who is behind it — might it be the animal exploiters trying to defame animal rights NGOs?


  28. Is this an industry website, posing as a site with “facts”? If you scroll down that website it smears the celebrities that support PETA’s work,etc. Perhaps we can do an expose of this website you provided and see who is behind it — might it be the animal exploiters trying to defame animal rights NGOs?

    1. Evva Says:

      peta supports our seal hunt. they are for breed specific legislation.

      here are someone else’s thoughts on peta…

      http://www.canadafreepress.com/2005/tabor062305.htm


      1. Thanks for that link Evva… This article by this extreme right wing news source Canada Free Press notes: “The Center for Consumer Freedom has created PetaKillsAnimals.com” the website you started this discussion with.

        Well, guess what? The Centre for Consumer Freedom is a front group for tobacco, alcohol and food industries created by a PR company called Berman and Co. It has also launched campaigns funded by Phillip Morris to promote smoking, against MADD – Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and against groups trying to stop animal testing.

        Read an expose of the Centre for Consumer Freedom at SourceWatch:
        http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Center_for_Consumer_Freedom

        This is a list of some of the groups it has targeted:

        Animal rights/animal testing/vegetarian

        EarthSave International
        Farm Animal Reform Movement (FARM)
        Farm Sanctuary
        Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)
        People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)
        Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)
        Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) (See also Huntingdon Life Sciences)
        United Poultry Concerns

        Anti-alcohol

        Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)
        National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA)

        Anti-tobacco

        Action on Smoking and Health (ASH)

        Environmentalism

        Earth First!
        Environmental Media Services
        Environmental Working Group
        Greenpeace USA
        Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)
        Waterkeeper Alliance
        Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
        SeaWeb

        Food safety

        Center for Food Safety (CFS)
        Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI)
        Chefs Collaborative
        Mothers for Natural Law
        Organic Consumers Association

        News & media

        Center for Media & Democracy, the publisher of PR Watch
        Adbusters
        Sustainable Agriculture/Family Farming
        American Corn Growers Association
        Dakota Resource Council
        Dakota Rural Action
        Idaho Rural Council
        Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
        Northern Plains Resource Council
        Powder River Basin Resource Council
        Turning Point Project
        Western Organization of Resource Councils

        That’s why it is important to do research, before believing any website that smears NGOs, as Louise says.

  29. Evva Says:

    thank you for informing me peta has changed their position on the seal hunt. however, i personally (who happens to be a vegan) do not like peta. others have similar feelings. all i wanted to do was share some information.


    1. It is fine sharing information, but not false info from smear campaigns. The Center for Consumer Freedom created PetaKillsAnimals.com” and it is a front group for tobacco, alcohol and food industries created by a PR company called Berman and Co.It has tried to smear Farm Sanctuary, PCRM and other animal rights groups. So that’s not sharing info, that’s spreading info from animal exploiting industries trying to divide and conquer the animal protection movement.

      Read an expose of the Centre for Consumer Freedom at SourceWatch:
      http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Center_for_Consumer_Freedom


      1. Also, please read this other sourcewatch report on Berman and Co – the PR company hired by Centre for Consumer Freedom and makers of the Petakills website and petition calling for it to lose its tax nonprofit status (ironies of ironies, the Centre for Consumer Freedom is an industry front group which also has that “nonprofit” tax exempt status, even though it represents special interests and not the public interest).

        Here’s the excellent expose of the industry group attacking PETA, the Farm Animal Rights Movement (FARM), Farm Sanctuary and other groups in the animal protection movement:
        Richard Berman cares about animals: clients exposed
        http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Richard_Berman_cares_about_animals:_clients_exposed

        Here’s a good article on Berman Exposed:
        http://www.bermanexposed.org/associate/richard-berman

        Also, this FB site summarizes the various exposes of Berman and Co. Please join it!
        http://www.facebook.com/DiscoverTheHiddenFacts?sk=app_23744633048

        It’s important for us all to learn more about these industry front group and write exposes. Let’s unmask the work of the animal exploitation industries in trying to divide and conquer and let’s not let them detract us from shining the spotlight on factory farms, transport trucks, and slaughterhouses. They will not succeed in the end, b/e compassionate people do organize in groups and work individually as part of a large animal rights movement and appreciate the value of unity and trying to get everyone on board..

  30. Louise Says:

    This is great information, thanks for sharing this. I’ll be sure to let people know the next time I join a PETA or other group discussion on line and “trolls” start attacking us for being compassionate people. I actually had one – on a PETA vegan discussion – send me a treatening message telling me I might as well kill myself if I don’t eat animals!! But luckily I knew who this “person” was representing. And I did report this person.

  31. Evva Says:

    Still killing after all these years: Five years after PETA’s Piggly Wiggly dumpster incident

    June 19, 2010 12:26 am ET

    http://www.examiner.com/animal-welfare-in-atlanta/still-killing-after-all-these-years-five-years-after-peta-s-piggly-wiggly-dumpster-incident


    1. again, Evva follow the money. Not one of your posts does anything to shed light on the Monsanto funded front group that set up the petakills website. If you really care about animal rights, why don’t you do any investigative research on the big animal exploiters and their front groups… not a word from you yet on this front group (do you like this industry front group?)

      1. Evva Says:

        i didn’t realize i was expected to provide my opinion on the front groups you bring up. any front group sucks. it’s a front… i.e. dishonest. but i’m not convinced that peta’s criticisms come from only front groups. you can look at peta’s own reports.

    2. Louise Says:

      Evva: The articles found on examiner.com are not official. Anyone can add an article to this web site (including you or me) whether true or false. I can bet you that Valerie Hayes is an alias for someone working for one of the PR companies hired by the meat industry. Instead of spending time reading this ‘information’ on web sites, why don’t you get involved with PETA and find out for yourself? You will be involved in helping animals then, and I think you’ll be happy to discover these smears are untrue.

      1. Evva Says:

        it references reports and the like, no?

        and i am involved in helping animals in many ways. i have no desire to do anything for peta anymore. i did in the past.

  32. louise webber Says:

    If Gwen is still holding her vigils, I would like to speak to her. I shall be travelling to T.O. in October and perhaps I could join her to offer support.


  33. Toronto Pig Save is regularly bearing witness 3x a week at Strachan and Lakeshore from 8 -10 a.m. where the transport trucks turn towards the slaughterhouse, and then at 677 Wellington from 10-11 am where the pigs are unloaded with rattle paddles and electric prods. Please join our FB group for info on times of protests each week.


  34. […] TPS has information sheets to systematically document any possible violations of animal cruelty laws and codes you witness. The information sheets are posted on our website here:https://torontopigsave.wordpress.com/slaughterhouse-vigil/ […]


  35. You can definitely see your skills in the work you write. The arena hopes for more passionate writers such as you who aren’t afraid to mention how they believe. At all times go after your heart.

  36. Shar Says:

    WOW beautifully written and shared Gwen, right from the heart. THANK U for sharing and inspiring – You, Anita (Mr.Bean!) and ALL the AMAAZING ppl @ TPS (I’m blessed to be a member) are AWESOME!!! Much blessings to all xo

  37. Ian Says:

    Humans are hypocrites!

    There are laws condemning animal abuse, but what they fail to notice is that cows, chickens, and pigs are abused every single day inside slaughterhouses. But of course, they don’t care, because the meat industries are profiting from all this abuse. If they make good money to support the economy, and if the vast majority of the public love eating meat, then the government wouldn’t give a shit about how badly they are treated.

  38. Ian Says:

    Gwen you are far above most other human beings! And I’m saying this as a fact!


  39. Normally I do not read post on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very pressured me to take a look at and do it! Your writing taste has been amazed me. Thank you, very nice post.

  40. here Says:

    I have got 1 recommendation for your web page. It looks like at this time there are a handful of cascading stylesheet problems while opening a number of webpages in google chrome and internet explorer. It is operating alright in internet explorer. Probably you can double check that.


  41. […] Bear witness at vigils […]

  42. Keri Says:

    I am a vegetarian and I really want to help. The pig truks pass by me several times a day as I walk to and from work. I have posted notes on Facebook about reducing pork consumption — some people have been supportive and others made rude comments and were ‘unfriended’ by me immediately. My problem is that I am extremely empathetic and emotional. So looking at images of abuse to animals and discussing it with others brings me to tears and it’s hard for me to get out of that funk all day. Is there anything that I can do to support without having to undergo that kind of emotional pain?

    1. jaime Says:

      i can completely identify with the pain! i take comfort in knowing that i am making the necessary effort to do what is right for these animals, for the environment, and for ourselves. when i focus on that, i can do what i do. i don’t need to look at any more videos to remind me of what is going on. the fact is that what is happening is wrong, and it’s a good thing that we have feelings. if we were indifferent…there would be no hope.

  43. Clare Gill Says:

    Deep bows to you Gwen

    From Clare in Ireland.

  44. tabuism Says:

    Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.

    ~ Buddha


  45. […] Ongoing Events Toronto Pig Save – Weekly Vigils to Bear […]


  46. […] More videos and information about the vigils are available here. […]


  47. […] More videos and information about the vigils are available here. […]

  48. candice Says:

    Could not read this without getting a huge lump in the throat, your an amazing person gwen, and I can’t imagine what it must be like.if only more people could care enough, I’d come stand with you if I could. Many hugs and huge respect from south africa. Xxxxx

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