The possibility that COVID-19 first infected humans at a live animal market in Wuhan, China inspired calls for countries to close these “wet markets” to mitigate zoonotic disease risk. Many calls focused on countries in Asia, but these markets operate inside the United States as well. This country is home to an extensive network of animal industries and practices that drive zoonotic disease emergence. The U.S. is the world’s largest importer of both domesticated animals and wildlife and is one of the world’s leading producers of livestock and captive wildlife. Yet according to a sweeping new report by Harvard Law School and New York University, Animal Markets and Zoonotic Disease in the United States, the U.S. “has no comprehensive strategy” to mitigate zoonotic disease risk from these practices. In this talk, moderated by LEAP Executive Director Viveca Morris, the report’s lead author Ann Linder will discuss the myriad forms of animal markets in the U.S. and the policymaking needed to address the risk they pose to human and nonhuman health alike.
Ann Linder is Associate Director of Policy & Research and Wildlife and Live Animal Markets Fellow with the Brooks McCormick Jr. Animal Law & Policy Program at Harvard Law School. Much of her work focuses on the intersection of animal law and criminal law, including wildlife trafficking. Prior to Harvard, she worked as a wildlife policy analyst for the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University focusing on applications of immunocontraceptive vaccines in free-roaming horses and cervids. She also spent time working with the Animal Protection Unit for the City of Austin, Texas after serving as a Legislative Policy Fellow for the Harvard Animal Law & Policy Program in 2018. Her work has been published by Harvard Law School, Stanford Law School, and Lewis and Clark Law School, as well as the New York Bar Association. She received her JD from Stanford Law School and holds a Master's of Science in Animals and Public Policy from Tufts University.
This event is part of the Law, Ethics & Animals Program at Yale Law School's Fall Speaker Series. It is co-sponsored with the Yale Animal Ethics Study Group, the Yale Animal Law Society, and the Yale Environmental Law Association.