Both nationally and internationally the debates over the humaneness of religious slaughter are causing contentious factions about both the suffering of an unstunned animal and the denial of religious freedoms. In the United States, the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act (HMSA) mandates that all animals be stunned prior to exsanguination; however, religious slaughter without stunning is deemed to be humane if done according to specific kosher and halal protocols. The arguments on both sides feature valid evidence about whether or not stunning is more humane.
To learn more about these issues, the following resources are recommended:
Federation of Veterinarians of Europe. “Slaughter of Animals Without Prior Stunning,” Position Paper, Federation Of Veterinarians Of Europe, link to PDF
Grandin, Temple and Joe Regenstein. “Religious Slaughter and Animal Welfare,” Meat Focus International, March (1994): 155-123, link to article
Shafi, Shuja and Jonathan Arkush. “Jewish and Muslim Methods of Slaughter Prioritise Animal Welfare,” The Guardian, 6 March 2014, link to article