Actress and animal rights activist Pamela Anderson serves free vegan meals during an event held by Green Party candidate for East Vancouver Bridget Burns to register voters for the federal election, in the downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on Wednesday October 9, 2019. Actress Pamela Anderson is asking Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to take meat and milk off prison menus to help the planet and the health of federal inmates, and save taxpayers some cash, to boot. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Actress and animal rights activist Pamela Anderson serves free vegan meals during an event held by Green Party candidate for East Vancouver Bridget Burns to register voters for the federal election, in the downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on Wednesday October 9, 2019. Actress Pamela Anderson is asking Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to take meat and milk off prison menus to help the planet and the health of federal inmates, and save taxpayers some cash, to boot. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Pamela Anderson asks Trudeau to serve inmates vegan meals to save cash

Anderson says a jail reduced costs by $273,000 when it switched to vegetarian meals

Actress Pamela Anderson is asking Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to take meat and milk off prison menus to help the planet and the health of federal inmates — and save taxpayers some cash, to boot.

The former Baywatch star makes the pitch in a letter to Trudeau part of her work with the animal-rights group PETA, writing that she hopes Canada embraces what she calls a “simple but effective way to reduce costs and improve lives.”

The Ladysmith-born actress wants Canada’s federal penitentiaries to serve vegan meals of beans, rice, lentils, pasta, vegetables and fruits, which she bills as sources of all the nutrients one would need, “at a fraction of the cost of meats and cheeses,” since most vegan ingredients don’t need to be refrigerated.

In its most recent departmental plan, Correctional Service Canada says it provides nutrition “sufficient in quality and quantity” and in line with the Canada Food Guide.

Anderson says the newly retooled food guide put less of an emphasis on eating meat and dairy, instead suggesting more plant-based proteins in Canadians’ diets.

Her letter also points out a UN climate panel report calling for a dietary shift to help combat climate change — another interest for the actress who backed the Greens and their leader Elizabeth May in the just-concluded federal election.

Four years ago, Anderson travelled to Arizona to serve vegetarian meals to the approximately 8,000 inmates at the Maricopa County Jail alongside Joe Arpaio, the controversial local sheriff who made the decision. Arpaio estimated the move would save US$100,000 a year.

Anderson says the jail reduced costs by $273,000 when it switched to vegetarian meals, although reported savings vary widely.

She says the savings could be even higher for Canada’s almost 40,000 inmates — a number that includes inmates in provincial jails, which fall outside federal jurisdiction.

A report in May from Statistics Canada said that in the fiscal year 2017-18, there were on average 24,657 adult inmates in provincial or territorial jails, while the federal portion was 14,129.

READ MORE: Pamela Anderson returns home to enjoy ‘peace and solitude’ of Ladysmith

VIDEO: Sea Shepherd releases footage after Pamela Anderson boards fish farm

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Ben Maartman, pictured in his ‘farm office’ has been elected as Area H director. (Ben Maartman photo)
Ben Maartman declared Director of CVRD Area H

Maartman will be sworn in on December 8

Beautiful morning with the sun peaking through, as viewed from Thetis Island. (Photo by Kelly Bannister)
November characterized by a record high, no snow and plenty of rain in Chemainus region

Temperature almost hits the 20 degree Celsius mark on Nov. 4

Applications for the OCP Steering Committee can be dropped off at Ladysmith City Hall or emailed to info@ladysmith.ca. (File photo)
Town seeks community members for OCP steering committee

The deadline for applications is January 4, 2021, at 4 p.m.

Three Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary Thrift Store volunteers have tested positive for COVID-19. (Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary photo)
Three Ladysmith Health Care Auxiliary Thrift Store volunteers test positive for COVID-19

Anyone who volunteered at Thrift Store between Nov. 14 - Nov. 28 is asked to monitor for symptoms

Ben Maartman, left, and Murray McNab are running for regional director for Area H North Oyster-Diamond in a Cowichan Valley Regional District byelection later this month. (Photos submitted)
Preliminary Area H byelection results show Maartman up by seven votes, McNab to ask for recount

Results of the by-election to by finalized by noon on Tuesday, December 1

A tongue-in-cheek message about wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 on a sign outside a church near Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection count climbs back up to 656

20 more people in hospital, active cases still rising

Dave Wallace coached the Parksville Royals for 23 years. (PQB News file photo)
B.C. baseball community mourns death of legendary Vancouver Island coach Dave Wallace

‘All who knew Dave and his passion for the game will miss him greatly’

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C. researchers launch study to test kids, young adults for COVID-19 antibodies

Kids and youth can often be asymptomatic carriers of the novel coronavirus

A sign is seen this past summer outside the Yunesit’in Government office west of Williams Lake reminding visitors and members to stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
B.C. First Nation leaders await privacy commissioner decision on COVID-19 information

Release of life-saving data cannot wait, says coalition of First Nations

MLA Jennifer Whiteside is B.C.’s new minister of education. She is speaking out against Chilliwack school trustee Barry Neufeld and asking him to resign. (Black Press)
New education minister calls on Chilliwack trustee to resign

Whiteside echoes former minister’s promise to look at options to remove Barry Neufeld

Peter Beckett. ~ File photo
Supreme Court of Canada to decide if it will hear appeal in 2010 wife murder trial

Peter Beckett has stood trial twice for murder in connection with the death of his wife, Laura Letts-Beckett

Tabor Home in Abbotsford. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)
B.C.’s largest COVID-19 care-home outbreak records 19 deaths, 147 cases

Tabor Home in Abbotsford has been battling outbreak since Nov. 4

Most Read