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Horses Without Carriages started this petition to Mayor, City Council, Tourism Officials & Hotels and

A former long time resident of Charleston writes in her blog – Don’t Get Taken for a Carriage Ride - why horse-drawn carriages and wagons are inhumane and cruel.  From personal experience, she addresses all the problems – the safety issue – for both the horses and people; inhumane working conditions; the hot brutal weather.  These are all issues that the city's decision makers have ignored.   Nothing has changed.  So we, the potential tourists to Charleston, are taking action.  We are voting with our pocket books.   Enough is enough! 

We take the pledge to not visit Charleston, South Carolina as long as the inhumane horse-drawn carriages continue. 

This is why

  • EXTREME HEAT:   All the issues discussed in the blog mentioned above are important.  But by far, the weather is the number one issue.  Charleston has a subtropical climate with warm humid weather much of the year.   Carriage operators operate their horse wagons at 98 degrees, with no consideration for high humidity, which can make the temperature feel well into the 100s.  It is the highest cut off point in the US.   Summer heat and humidity can be very hard on horses, particularly working ones.  People who work outside in the heat are able to stop for a break.  Not so for the horses.  They are at the mercy of their owners -- people who make money off their backs and will push them to continue. 
  • CRUEL INHUMANE IMAGE:  The City allows one horse to pull a wagon of 17 people. The image of a struggling horse, considered nothing more than an inanimate engine pulling ignorant tourists,  reflects very badly on Charleston.  
  • SELF MONITORING:  Charleston relies on the carriage operators to self monitor their business with very little oversight.  This in itself is a glaring conflict of interest with no one advocating for the horses.   Additional regulations have proven not to work in cities that have tried it because they cannot be enforced. 
  • TOO MANY STUDIES WITH NO RESULTS:  The carriage horse industry and the City of Charleston have demonstrated time and again that the system does not work, engaging in numerous studies, which have not resolved anything. The system has not changed and accidents, injuries and inhumane conditions have continued. Profits appear to be more important than compassion and humanity.  


CHANGING TIMES: All over the world, decision makers are listening to the public and taking action on horse drawn carriages. Cities that have recently banned this hack line trade, joining others like Paris, London and Toronto, include Asheville, NC; Mumbai India, Salt Lake City, Utah and San Juan, Puerto Rico. 

We ask the Mayor, Council Members, Tourism officials and hotels to make a commitment to not promote these inhumane horse-drawn carriages in Charleston and to support and pass a bill to ban horse-drawn carriages.   There are many humane alternatives to horse-drawn carriages, which can offer well paying jobs and investments.   Horses can be relocated to sanctuaries.  

Please move your city into the 21st century.  If you do, we will once again visit. 

UPDATE:  On Monday, July 18th, after this petition was published, ANOTHER accident occurred in Charleston.  Horses spooked (nothing new there) and ran into a brick wall.  A passenger suffered a broken ankle.  The original article said the horses scratched up but has since been "edited" by the newspaper.  Carriage drivers do their spin, assisted by the media.






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