Too many animals suffer and experience neglect, mistreatment, cruelty, injury and death as the result of human activities. We must properly care for animals and treat them with respect and compassion. The Greens are committed to ending the suffering of animals.


The Australian Greens believe that:

1. Animals must be recognised as sentient beings that deserve our care and respect.

2. Animals have intrinsic value, separate from the needs of humans.

3. Humans have a duty of care to minimise physical and psychological suffering of animals resulting from human activity.

4. Strong animal welfare standards and laws are necessary.

5. Native animals and their habitats are at particular risk and require stringent protections.

6. Urgent action is required to address the impacts of the climate crisis on global ecosystems and biodiversity, which is contributing to significant animal suffering, mass deaths and extinctions.


The Australian Greens want:

1. A strong, uniform, properly enforced national legislative framework for the protection of the welfare of animals, which:

1.1 makes any act of animal cruelty subject to criminal penalties; and

1.2 regulates conditions for the captivity, transport and slaughter of animals that prevent cruelty and suffering

2. An end to cruel, inhumane or unnecessary use of animals for teaching and research purposes.

3. The pursuit of technologies to further avoid the use of animals for teaching and research purposes.

4. The establishment of an independent national regulatory body to provide national oversight and coordination of animal welfare.

5. Increased community understanding of the impacts of consumer choices on animal welfare and on the environment.

6. An end to the export of live animals for slaughter, consumption or profit.

7. The consideration of Australian animal welfare standards when negotiating relevant trade agreements.

8. An end to inhumane farming practices that are inconsistent with the behavioural needs of animals and intensive farming practices in meat, dairy and egg production with a just transition for workers employed in those industries.

9. The development of comprehensive and enforceable Australian standards for free-range farming practices for all agricultural animals, which meet community expectations of the definition of “free range” and ensures animal welfare.

10. A ban on the importation of animal products produced by methods which do not accord with Australian animal welfare standards.

11. A ban on the importation or exportation of animals for zoos, except where it will assist the overall conservation of the species.

12. Improved global conservation of habitat for endangered species through Australia’s trade, diplomatic and aid relations.

13. An accurate national labelling system for foods and other products identifying cruelty-free, organic, or free-range products, species-specific fish, and products free from content derived from habitat destruction, such as palm oil.

14. The abolition of the cruel or inhumane use of animals for sport, recreation or entertainment.

15. A ban on the use of animals in circuses and theme parks.

16. The most humane, effective means available to be used in the control of introduced species, including humane population management methods.

17. Research into and development of more humane methods for the management and control of introduced species.

18. Community education on the needs of animals and our responsibility to minimise any physical, psychological and emotional suffering of animals caused by human activities, and to maximise their quality of life.

19. To ensure education programs are in place for responsible pet ownership.

20. An end to the production and testing of consumer items, including cosmetics and fur, that entail cruel or inhumane use of animals or that threaten species survival.

21. An end to the importation, sale or marketing of animal-tested cosmetics or cosmetic ingredients.

22. A ban on whale slaughter and lethal and unnecessary research on whales.

23. Expand the number of organisations that have the authority to fully investigate and prosecute charges relating to animal welfare in appropriate courts and tribunals.

24. An end to commercial horse racing.

25. A ban on greyhound racing.

26. A ban on recreational shooting of all animals, including Australian native water birds.

27. The elimination of all cruel practices in relation to the breeding, sale and confinement of animals.

28. The elimination of intensive breeding of animals for companionship, gambling, competition or racing.

29. The end of selective breeding that results in characteristics detrimental to animal health and wellbeing.

30. A ban on the reprisal killing of any wild animal.

31. Ensure all disaster emergency plans encompass the welfare of animals.

32. A ban on the export of greyhounds for commercial purposes, including for breeding and racing purposes.

33.  The phasing out of sheep mulesing through the effective and humane prevention and treatment of fly strike, including breeding out of predisposed traits.

34. A ban on the import, sale, use and consumption of shark fin products.

35. An end to cruel management practices associated with the meat, egg and dairy industries.

(Animals Policy as amended by Special National Conference August 2020.)