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18 August 2011 - Government ignores public demand to end live animal trade      

Government ignores public demand to end live animal trade

18 August, 2011                                            

Despite immense public disapproval resulting from the recent expose of the unacceptable conditions of Australian live export cattle in Indonesia, the government has not listened and rejected two bills introduced by independent MP Andrew Wilkie and Australian Greens MP Adam Bandt, which would have led to the permanent ban of live animal export and put Australia at the forefront of animal welfare.

HSI is extremely disappointed, not only in the Government’s decision today, but all members of Parliament, who have heard thousands of requests from the people to end the live export trade and have made no attempts to respond to this.  As a country, we have lost our moral compass.”  Verna Simpson, HSI director stated.

Furthermore, HSI is disappointed all attempts to promote public opinion were disregarded in this decision-making process.  “HSI originally asked all Federal Members of Parliament to call for a conscience vote on live export, supporting popular public opinion rather than party line, and was pleased to see a number of MPs pushing for this.”  Ms Simpson explained.

It is unfortunate that government does not recognise and respond to such public disapproval of continued live export.” Ms Simpson stated.

HSI has made a submission to the Senate Inquiry into Animal Welfare Standards in Australia’s Live Export Markets, whose report is due September 21, and stated that a complete review of Australia’s animal welfare policies, frameworks and standards is long overdue and urgently needed, as is the establishment of an Australian Animal Welfare Council, to ensure that Australia is a world leader in animal welfare policy and practice into the future.  Unfortunately, Senator Bill Heffernan, Chair of the Rural Affairs and Transport Committee inquiry, has made his absolute support of the industry very clear. 

Copies of HSI’s submission to the Senate Inquiry are available upon request

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