The Andrews government’s re-announced plan to develop an animal action plan and a review of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act are simply hollow if the Andrews government continues to allow duck shooting, jumps racing, greyhound racing, battery hens and sow stalls in Victoria, Greens animal welfare spokesperson, Sue Pennicuik said today.
“The announcement of a new ‘public sector group called Animal Welfare Victoria’, to be overseen by the Minister for Agriculture, is simply an announcement of what appears to be a body which will oversee the existing arrangements for animal welfare such as they are.
“The Minister for Agriculture also oversees The Game Management Authority, a body which promotes ‘game’ hunting in Victoria, including the annual duck shooting season which sees thousands of native water birds and other birds, including rare and endangered species, slaughtered every year,” Ms Pennicuik said.
“How will the minister reconcile these conflicts of interest?
“If the government is to be taken seriously about ensuring ‘that wherever animals are, their well-being and welfare is a priority’,* then it really needs to catch up with most of the rest of Australia which long ago banned duck shooting and jumps racing and put an end to greyhound racing, which is responsible for the needless deaths of an estimated 4,000 greyhounds in Victoria every year.**
“Urgent action also needs to be taken to protect the habitat of threatened species such as koalas, the Greater Glider and Victoria’s fauna emblem – the leadbeater’s possum, from logging activities.
“The Greens continue to call for an independent regulatory body for animal welfare and this announcement falls short of that,” Ms Pennicuik said.
*Minister’s media release
**Racing Integrity Commissioner 2015
For further comment: Sue Pennicuik: 03 9530 8399