Earlier, we reported the provincial government purchased 260 leather portfolios as part of its new oath cermonies. In an interview, community services director Anne McKinnon - who says the cost of those binders is $45, not $75 as noted in documents obtained by Public Eye - explained, "What they wanted to provide are long-term keepsakes. They're meant to be a token - something that's meaningful for people when they come in. They've got long-term use. They're something that can be used for a very long time." But not everyone is happy with the government decision's to purchase animal hide office supplies.
In an interview with Public Eye, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals assistant campaigns manager Matt Rice said, "By purchasing leather, the provincial government is supporting cruelty to animals. From the farm to the store, life is Hell for cows and all animals that are raised for their skin and flesh. The provincial government is certainly risking offending vegetarians and other people who care about animals and who don't want to support cruelty to animals. And they could do much better by choosing any number of pleather alternatives that are available in the twenty-first century."
Continued Mr. Rice, "They would most likely be a lot more inexpensive. They'd be better for the environment and the animals as well. Leather production wreaks havoc on the environment. The leather industry is categorized as a gross consumer of energy. And over 95 percent of leather products are chrome painted. And the noxious waste from tanneries that contains chromium, lead, cyanide, sulphide and acid are considered hazardous by many environmental organizations."