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Speak Out to Help #FreeTheFresnoElephants

By Courtney Fern

The Fresno Chaffee Zoo’s Board of Directors has just announced they’ll be holding a meeting tomorrow, June 16th, which includes opportunities for public comment. If you’re in the Fresno area and able to attend the meeting at 5:30 p.m PT, you can help us #FreeTheFresnoElephants by speaking during the public comment period to urge the Board to close the zoo’s elephant exhibit and send Amahle, Nolwazi, and Vusmusi to a sanctuary.

If you attend the meeting, please email us at and let us know! If you’re unable to attend, you can still help #FreeTheFresnoElephants by signing and sharing our petition calling for their freedom. 

Below are details for the meeting (here is the meeting agenda) and a sample statement to make during public comment.

What: Fresno Chaffee Zoo Board of Directors Meeting
When: Thursday, June 16th at 5:30 p.m. PT
Where: Fresno Chaffee Zoo’s Zooplex, 894 W. Belmont Avenue, Fresno, CA 93728

Sample Public Comment

Hi, my name is [insert name] and I’m here to urge the Board to close the zoo’s elephant exhibit and release Amahle, Nolwazi, and Vusmusi to a sanctuary. Elephants are autonomous, social, and incredibly cognitively complex beings who suffer greatly when confined to small spaces and prevented from engaging in behaviors necessary to meet their physical and psychological needs. Amahle, Nolwazi, and Vusmusi have no true freedom of choice at your zoo. Their days are controlled by zoo employees. They are confined to a small yard they have limited access to. Everything about the life you’re forcing them to lead is known to cause enormous suffering in elephants. Another life is possible for Nolwazi, Amahle, and Vusmusi. They could be released to one of the accredited elephant sanctuaries in the United States where they would be able to live freely and with respect and dignity. Please act in the elephants’ best interest and release them to a sanctuary. Thank you for your time.

Stay tuned for more ways to help free Nolwazi, Amahle, and Vusmusi to a sanctuary as well as court case updates. You can visit our California clients’ court case timeline to learn more about who they are and read our filings on their behalf. Thank you!

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