Policy

We supply government decision makers with research on threatened species.

See our findings
Influencing Influencers

We are lobbying Congress to ban the indiscriminate poisoning of predators.

Learn why
Country-Level Advocacy

We provided parliament with facts about its country's role in the ivory trade.

See the results
Building Consensus

Animals need a seat at the table.

If you want to change the game, start with the rules. And with animal welfare, that means the laws. Our first campaign effectively ended the commercial slaughter of whitecoat seal pups. Now we’re taking the fight to decision-makers around the world.

85%

of the world’s endangered vertebrates are not adequately covered by the world’s protected areas

1%

or less of European companies’ administrative burden is spent on environmental compliance

67

countries still lack a basic legal framework for protecting animals

Animal welfare is about natural freedoms: the freedom to live and reproduce in a healthy environment, the freedom from hunger, the freedom from discomfort, disease, and distress.

Photo: IFAW
Tell the Truth

When our laws have loopholes and our lawmakers look the other way, those freedoms disappear.

Few lobbyists are trained biologists. Even fewer have spent time inside the thoracic cavity of a dead right whale. Ours have. We bring half-a-century of firsthand experience to our advocacy campaigns, ensuring that policies, legislation, and international treaties recognize real problems and real solutions. Around the world, we’re giving people big ideas to rally around, and law enforcement the necessary tools to protect animals.

In a world of competing special interests, we tell the truth about animal welfare and conservation. That means educating people about the deafening impact of noise pollution from seismic oil exploration on whales, or informing tourists about wildlife products to avoid when shopping for souvenirs. We share guidelines for responsible pet ownership and how to help animals in a natural disaster. In places where people and animals share the land, we teach people how to promote healthy, conflict-free interactions with wildlife. 

Our campaigns target governments and politicians, students and teachers, farmers and business owners, citizens and law enforcement. Because the hard truth is that all people share the responsibility for animal welfare. 

Photo: IFAW
Influence Influencers

Our first fourteen years of activism and advocacy led to the world’s first ban on seal products. When the Canadian government revived the hunt 15 years later, we worked to help expand the ban, bringing the commercial sealing industry to its knees once again. In the UK, our work led to the passage of the Hunting Act 2004, which outlaws the use of dogs to hunt wild mammals. (Since passage, hundreds of cases have been successfully prosecuted under the Act.) In Russia, we successfully lobbied to ban the winter den hunt that orphans countless brown bears every year. And, in recent years, as elephant populations have been devastated by a new wave of poaching, we have worked with the governments of the United States, China and the UK to shut down ivory markets.

Now we’re lobbying the United States Congress to pass a bill that replaces hazardous fishing gear with ropeless traps that ensure marine mammals’ safety. And in Europe, we’re working with lawmakers to close remaining legal ivory markets.

Photo: IFAW
Build Consensus

To make permanent changes in our laws and lifestyles, we need partners with influence. That’s why we participate in meetings of international treaties and agreements, including the United Nations Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the International Whaling Commission (IWC), and most recently, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

The differences we’re making on the ground start at the top. In the IWC, for instance, when votes in support of whaling were being “bought” with overseas development aid and cash in brown envelopes, we helped blow the whistle. The result: in 2011, the IWC banned cash payments for membership fees and adopted critical transparency measures.

#ActsForAnimals

#ActsForAnimals

Sometimes what’s most effective is also most humane

See project

#ActsForAnimals

When species cross borders, nations must work together

See project

#ActsForAnimals

Laws don’t save species. People do.

See project

#ActsForAnimals

There are more tigers in captivity in the United States than there are in the wild

See project

People leading the way
Related news

News

Watch the film the sealing industry does not want you to see

Read more

News

World leaders deliver a big win for lions, leopards, whales and blue sharks

Read more

News

Celebrities unite in IFAW campaign to save Endangered Species Act from attack

Read more

News

Workshop addresses cheetah cub trafficking

Read more

stay in the know. be ready to act.

Stay up to date on the animals and issues you care about most. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Unfortunately, the browser you use is outdated and does not allow you to display the site correctly. Please install any of the modern browsers, for example:

Google Chrome Firefox Safari