It is the right and duty of citizens and their organizations to offer measures that provide for the safety of our children, citizens, visitors and the animals that pull the wagons.

We believe this tiny step toward public safety is a step forward.

Much more work needs to be done to address the interaction of horse-drawn wagons and public safety. 120+ carriage-related accidents/incidents since 2016 should be of great concern to responsible elected officials whose main purpose for existing is to ensure public safety!

The City‘s version of the Carriage Safety Ordinance laid out a thoughtful plan for responsible child safety in wagons. City FOIA reports show that children have jumped and fallen out of wagons. The Tourism Commission in its questionable, chaotic process of review of the Carriage Safety Ordinance threw child safety off the wagon.

Routine, random Drug and Alcohol screening provisions are standard for the vast majority of businesses and certain government entities. CCHA offered up a provision that Charleston requires carriage companies that receive a license to operate in the City of Charleston to maintain a policy that requires routine, random drug testing. That, too, was ejected as the carriage industry-friendly City Council wagon careened through a process that only allowed 30 seconds for us to make our case!

What is our path forward?

It’s time to remind Charleston’s Mayor and City Council that their job is to represent their voters not to protect an industry that thinks it can outsmart the Charleston community and continues to turn a blind eye to the safety of children, citizens, visitors, and animals.

We pledge to continue to fight for horses and mules that are forced to work in inhumane conditions and for children whose safety should be a priority.

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We can do this. Together.