W. Hollywood Revises its Fur-Free Apparel Status

In What's New, Industry News by Lauren Parker

FURFur designers rejoice: West Hollywood is no longer “Fur Free.”

The West Hollywood City Council recently approved revisions to the so-called “fur ban” ordinance, which now “affirmatively allows for the sale of fur by apparel retailers,” according to a statement put out by the Fur Information Council of America.

These revisions weakened an already diluted ban introduced four years ago that prohibited the sale of fur apparel while still allowing the sale of fur accessories and furnishings in the home design shops throughout West Hollywood.

The amended fur ban ordinance moves the City even further from its fur-free intentions that drove the introduction of the original ordinance four years ago and many in the community are questioning its purpose.

‘Makes No Sense’

The so-called arbitrary nature of the ordinance, has raised some questions, however.

“Why would the City exempt these furs, but refuse retailer requests to exempt furs that are byproducts of food production including shearling and calfskin?” asked Genevieve Morrill, president of the West Hollywood Chamber of Commerce.  “The amended ordinance means that local retailers can sell mink coats but not UGG boots.  It makes no sense.”

The revisions to the ordinance were prompted by a CA Superior Court ruling in the case of Mayfair House vs. the City of West Hollywood. In this ruling the Court found the city’s previous fur ban ordinance in violation of section 3039(b) of the State Fish & Game Code that mandates that certain fur products in California may be purchased or sold at any time.

“This is a victory for the apparel retailers in West Hollywood,” says According to David Fink, attorney for Mayfair House. “The exemptions written into the new fur ban ordinance now allow a wide array of fur products to be sold in West Hollywood apparel stores, and will make it virtually impossible to enforce the ordinance against non-exempt fur products.”  He added, “Section 3039(b) allows for the sale of products that include mink, fox, beaver, coyote and muskrat to name a few.  They are some of the most commonly trapped animals and commonly used furs in fur garments.”

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