Groupon SA have contacted us to invoke the support of the animal welfare community in identifying unethical lion exploitation resorts or tourism facilities. They should be applauded for adopting an ethical stance on which facilities they should not promote.
In response to emails from CEO Wayne Gosling and Western Cape account manager Carl Erasmus, we responded:
Thanks Carl and Wayne for your ethical concerns.
As I explained to Carl, drawing the line between good and bad facilities is not exact or easy; there are plenty of shades of grey between black and white.
The best list we know is our Canadian colleague Carmen Berdan's page Volunteers in Africa Beware.
Hope this helps, but I cannot deny that you have a tough task and will never be able to keep everyone happy.
We'll help as much as we can.
Carl had earlier written:
It is with great appreciation for your cause that we formally send you this letter of support. This is to insure we align our business to your cause by asking you for advice when it comes to us featuring any lion related services on our website.
His email was backed up by a letter from CEO Wayne Gosling, pledging to fully support our efforts and to use our website and advice to ensure that Groupon supports the right industries. ‘We hope to build a strong relationship with CACH in efforts to stop canned lion hunting.’
So, if you see Groupon advertising a facility which you believe is linked to the canned hunting industry, eg by breeding and offering cub petting, please don’t shout at Groupon.
Do your homework, and find out as much as you can from us and other sources so that you can give them convincing reasons to withdraw their support for that facility.
Let’s work with Groupon SA. We can help each other – for the lions’ sake.