PETA Teams Up With Wills Shoes To Give Leather The Boot

For Immediate Release:

14 May 2014


Hannah Levitt +44 (0) 20 7837 6327, ext 235; [email protected]

Public Asked to Swap Callous Skins for 20 Per Cent off Cruelty-Free Footwear

London – To highlight the superior quality of modern animal-free footwear, PETA is teaming up with Wills, a vegan shoe company, to entice shoppers to swap cruel leather for compassionate pleather by offering 20 per cent off any new pair of stylish Wills animal-free shoes in return for each pair of leather shoes that is sent to the animal charity.

Since opinion polls show that 95 per cent of the British public would never dream of wearing fur, PETA is looking to highlight to these same compassionate shoppers the cruelty to animals, environmental damage and human suffering behind the barbaric leather trade – as shown in this leather exposé narrated by fashion designer Stella McCartney. Just as countless people who have had a change of heart about wearing fur have donated their unwanted fur coats and jackets to PETA to be used in street protests, distributed to the homeless and sent to refugees overseas, the donated leather shoes will also be used for similar worthy causes.

“Wills and PETA know that the only place leather belongs is on its original owner”, says PETA UK Associate Director Mimi Bekhechi. “Not only does modern cruelty-free microfibre look and breathe like leather, it is also superior because it lasts longer, repels water and doesn’t cost cows, sheep or any other animals an arm and a leg. With all the luxurious faux-leather shoes available, there’s no excuse to kill animals for their skin.”

Every year, the global leather industry slaughters more than a billion animals and tans their skins and hides. Many of these animals endure all the horrors of factory farming – including extreme crowding and confinement, deprivation and unanaesthetised castration, branding, tail-docking and dehorning – as well as cruel treatment during transport and slaughter. Highly toxic materials such as formaldehyde, mineral salts, coal-tar derivatives and various oils, dyes and finishes – some of which are cyanide-based – are used to turn animal skins into leather. The majority of leather comes from India and China, countries with poor environmental and workplace standards, and leather workers have little protection against toxins that studies have shown result in higher incidences of cancer, blindness, respiratory problems, skin diseases and birth defects in those working at, or living close to, tanneries.

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