Yale Hosts National Conference on Animals and the Law

Attorneys, law students and professors from across the country will convene at Yale Law School, November 5-7, for “The Future of Animal Law,” a conference exploring how U.S. law is evolving to reflect Americans’ changing attitudes about animals.

Sponsored by the Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) and organized with the assistance of the Law School’s Student Animal Legal Defense Fund (SALDF) chapter, the conference marks a milestone in the field of “animal law.”

“Animal law is a vibrant emerging field,” says Yale Law School Dean Harold Koh. “Yale Law School is pleased to host this conference along with the Animal Legal Defense Fund. As increasing attention is focused on the growing body of laws surrounding animal rights, practitioners and scholars will welcome this opportunity to discuss cutting-edge legal issues with the foremost experts in this field.”

“Animal law” is a body of statutory and case law that includes animals and trust law, judicial recognition of animals’ inherent interests, non-economic damages (i.e., pain and suffering) in lawsuits related to killed or injured companion animals, etc.

Among the animal law and animal protection experts who are scheduled to take part in the conference are ALDF Executive Director Joyce Tischler; Dean Koh; Steven M. Wise, author of “Rattling the Cage” and “Drawing the Line”; Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States; Paul Leonard, director of the Center for Animal Law & Advocacy and former lieutenant governor of Ohio; David Wolfson, adjunct professor of law at Harvard Law School; David Favre, professor of law at Michigan State University College of Law; and Josh Marquis, district attorney of Clatsop County, Ore. In addition, ALDF will present two studies on animal law topics at the conference: one exploring the impact of felony animal cruelty laws and another offering a broad overview of state animal laws across the country.

For a conference schedule, see www.animallawconference.com. Interviews can be arranged with conference participants by contacting Steve Hockensmith at 707-769-7771, ext. 15. Hockensmith will also be able to supply copies of ALDF’s animal law studies and conference material. Press passes for the conference can be obtained by contacting Janet Conroy, associate director of Public Affairs at Yale Law School, at 203-432-8464.

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Media Contact

Gila Reinstein: gila.reinstein@yale.edu, 203-432-1325