This year, a group of celebrity activists signed the Turkey-Free Pledge, an initiative launched by farmed animal sanctuary Farm Sanctuary to urge Americans to leave turkeys off their plates during the holiday season. “I object to animal cruelty, environmental destruction, the exploitation of slaughterhouse workers, and the deep wounds inflicted upon rural communities by the factory farming industry,” the Farm Sanctuary pledge states. “As such, I will join Farm Sanctuary in celebrating a compassionate Thanksgiving by leaving turkey off my dinner plate.”Alec Baldwin, Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara, Edie Falco, Sia, Alan Cumming, Lisa Edelstein, Richard Marx, and Daisy Fuentes and others have added their names to the pledge in an effort to urge fans to choose animal-free options this Thanksgiving.

While millions of turkeys are killed each year to become holiday centerpieces (an estimated 46 million for Thanksgiving alone), this year is particularly devastating in that many of those turkeys were brutally “depopulated” as a result of disruptions to the supply chain caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, while the government has mandated that meat plants continue to stay open during the pandemic, more than 45,000 meat industry workers have tested positive for COVID-19. The celebrities signed the Turkey-Free Pledge as an effort to support animals, workers, and the fight against the climate crisis. 

As part of the effort, actress Sadie Sink—known for her role as “Mad Max” on Netflix hit Stranger Things—released a video message explaining why, this year, she is adopting a turkey through Farm Sanctuary’s Adopt A Turkey Project instead of eating one and urged her fans to do the same. “I hope that this holiday season, instead of supporting this destructive factory farming industry, I hope you guys will join me in celebrating the lives of turkeys by adopting (Farm Sanctuary rescues) Jackie, Sandy, Tutu, Ferris, or Venus.” 

Those interested in joining the celebrity activists in signing the pledge can do so here and more information on adopting a turkey can be found here.