Sen. McKell introduces legislation to eliminate gas chamber euthanasia

Katherine Heigl shows support and encourages legislators to pass S.B. 108

Today, Sen. Mike McKell released S.B. 108 Animal Shelter Revisions, banning the use of gas chambers in animal shelters. The proposed legislation addresses euthanasia methods animal shelters can use and requires shelters to adopt a humane euthanasia policy and training program.

“S.B. 108 is a compassionate approach to euthanasia,” said Sen. Mike McKell. “Not only are gas chambers more expensive, but they also unnecessarily place staff members at higher risk of injury or death from carbon monoxide gas. Other forms of euthanasia are more humane, cost-effective and safe. Switching to injections just makes sense.”

Katherine Heigl, a Utah resident and founder of the Jason Debus Heigl Foundation, an organization dedicated to animal welfare, showed support for the bill by joining Sen. McKell at the Capitol for its release.

“The sign of a civilized society is marked by how we treat the voiceless and innocent,” said Heigl. “We cannot continue the inhumane practice of using gas chambers for animals. I encourage the Legislature to pass S.B. 108 and for all Utahns to support this legislation. Thank you, Sen. McKell, for shedding light on this issue once again. Gas chamber euthanasia needs to end immediately.”

Utah is one of only three states that continues to use gas chambers in animal shelters. Currently, only five active shelters out of 3,500 shelters use gas chambers to euthanize animals in the United States. S.B. 108 will be heard in committee during the coming weeks. Track the bill here.