Machipongo, Va. – This year on May 4th, United Poultry Concerns launched International Respect for Chickens Day. We urged everyone to do an ACTION of compassion for chickens on that day to celebrate chickens throughout the world. This will be an annual May 4th event.
This year’s event was celebrated in schools, offices, sanctuaries and the streets bringing new awareness of the plight – and delight – of chickens to people everywhere. Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary writes, "Thank you for creating this celebration. We had a great discussion after the children viewed your poster ‘What Wings are For.’ They had never really considered what wings are really for."
Miami Lakes Educational Center wrote, "Our school would like to thank you so much for sending us the posters and informative brochures to promote International Respect for Chickens Day on May 4th. I’ve enclosed a picture of our library display."
Sally Ulrich of Harrisburg, Pa. gave everyone in her office hen-shaped information boxes prompting "an around-the-cooler discussion [where] the mother of a 2nd-grader began to reevaluate the ethics and educational value of hatching eggs in the classroom. I received many heartfelt thank-yous."
These are just a few of the many emails and letters we received, more of which appear in the Spring-Summer issue of our quarterly magazine PoultryPress."
On Mother’s Day, May 8, UPC brought International Respect for Chickens Day to Takoma Park, Md. to the statue of Roscoe the Rooster, "the beloved bird who roamed city streets and yards in the 1990s and became Takoma Park’s unofficial mascot," says reporter Sean Sands in the Takoma Park Gazette quoting UPC president Karen Davis on chickens in general: "Here’s a bird who was a lively, vibrant individual, living and raising their families, and being ecologically benign in their natural habitat [the rainforests of Southeast Asia], who has been turned into the Earth’s worst prisoner" ("Activists cry fowl in Takoma Park," May 11, 2005).
"International Respect for Chickens Day is a day to celebrate chickens and to protest against the bleakness of their lives in farming and cockfighting operations," Davis explains. "Chickens are lively birds who have been torn from the leafy world in which they evolved. We want chickens to be restored to their green world and not be eaten or used as surrogates for human aggression."