HSI works on many fronts to fight for better policy and treatment for animals. Sometimes that involves going to court when we feel that an injustice has been done.

We are currently involved in a case at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) fighting to have non-lethal shark control methods introduced in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park to replace the Queensland Government’s outdated Shark Control Program that sees 26 species of sharks sentenced to death on drumlines.

In the past, we’ve appealed several government decisions through the AAT and succeeded in getting:

  • better conditions for Asian elephants imported from Thailand to Taronga and Melbourne Zoos;

  • increased protections for Australian sea lions, eastern gemfish, Harrison’s dogfish and threatened albatross and petrels in Australia’s largest fishery—the Southern and Eastern Scalefish Fishery (SESSF);

  • national guidelines for the conservation threatened grey-headed flying foxes substantially improved;

  • significantly improved export guidelines for the management of Tasmanian pademelons, Bennett’s wallabies and brush-tail possums;

  • documents released to demonstrate Commonwealth criticisms of the NSW biodiversity offsets scheme.

HSI has also successfully challenged Japan’s so-called scientific whaling program through the Australian Federal Court. After a four year-long court battle, in 2008 the court declared Japanese whaling in the Australian Sanctuary in Antarctica to be a breach of Australian law and issued an injunction ordering the hunt be stopped. HSI secured a further ruling that continued Japanese whaling is in contempt of court and the whalers were ordered to pay a one million dollar fine. Finally, at the end of 2018 Japan announced a decision to end its whale hunts in Antarctica. The fine has never been paid.

For further information on these or any of our other legal challenges please contact us at +61 2 9973 1728.