International Day of Action for Elephants in Zoos (IDAEZ)

IDAEZ Celebrity Supporters 2011

Lily Tomlin

I started speaking out for elephants after I learned that without space to move, elephants in zoos develop crippling foot disease and arthritis, conditions that lead to a premature, painful death. I also discovered that their repetitive rocking, swaying and head bobbing were not natural behaviors at all but signs of deep psychological distress caused by their impoverished lives.

Elephants were never meant to be confined in zoos, where they are suffering and dying prematurely. Please help me share this important message by participating in the International Day of Action for Elephants in Zoos on June 11th, a unique event that brings the world together to stop the suffering of elephants in zoos.

The issue is simple: Elephants need room to roam in complex, natural environments, side by side with other elephants. Even the most "naturalistic" zoo display can't give elephants the space and freedom they need to thrive. Confinement in small zoo exhibits destroys elephants’ spirits, deadens their minds and damages their bodies.

Don’t be fooled by zoos’ lofty claims: Caging elephants in unnatural zoo displays may entertain the public, but it's not conservation. It's condemning some of the most highly intelligent and self-aware animals on Earth to lifetimes of misery, disease and early death.

Please join me and other activists around the world in standing up for elephants on June 11th. Together we can put an end to the cruel and destructive practice of keeping elephants in zoos.

Jorja Fox

"Hi, Jorja Fox here, asking you to please support this year's International Day of Action for Elephants in Zoos. These magnificent, magical creatures are under attack in the wild and also in zoos, where inadequate and unnatural conditions damage their bodies, kill their spirits, and tragically end their lives well before their time.

We need to put the focus where it belongs – on protecting elephants in their natural habitats – and stop wasting hundreds of millions of dollars on artificial zoo displays that will never meet their needs. Instead of cruel confinement and domination, let's offer sanctuary, peace, compassion and hope. It's up to each and every one of us to take a stand for the elephants now in order to ensure their welfare in captivity and their continued existence on this planet."

Mariana Tosca

I was raised like most of you, thinking that zoos were a great place to go see elephants and learn about them. But as I became more educated about the logistics of keeping elephants in zoos, I was able to see past zoos’ ludicrous marketing campaigns and came to understand how outrageous and barbaric it is to contain these magnificent beings in unconscionably small enclosures, robbing them entirely of the ability to fulfill their inherent needs. Simple needs like walking and hanging out with their families.

Zoos are not conservators – they are exhibitors. Their continuous claim that “keeping elephants in zoos is about conservation” is nothing but a fallacious public relations spin. The key to conservation is protecting elephants’ natural habitats.

Please join me on June 11th to support the efforts of activists all over the globe. The elephants need your voice.