LFA Submission to the Senate Inquiry into the Voice for Animals (Independent Office of Animal Welfare) Bill 2015

On the back of the Greens’ dissenting report opposing enactment of Senator Back’s ag-gag bill, the Greens introduced the Voice for Animals (Independent Office of Animal Welfare) Bill 2015 (“Bill”) into the Senate on 23 June 2015.  The Bill has been referred to the Senate Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation, the same Committee that considered Senator Back’s ag-gag bill.

LFA was invited to provide a submission to the Committee, which it did on 10 August 2015.

A copy of LFA’s submission will be made public once released from parliamentary confidentiality restrictions. 

The Bill proposes the establishment of an independent statutory office, to be known as the Independent Office of Animal Welfare, to act as an oversight, review and reporting body in respect of the Commonwealth Government’s animal welfare standards and the Australian Standards for Export of Livestock and Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System in Particular.

Although not a ‘watch-dog’ agency with substantive investigate powers or prosecuting authority, LFA supports the establishment of the Independent Office of Animal Welfare as a sensible step towards a more rigorous Commonwealth animal welfare regulatory system.

The Committee report is due on 15 September 2015.

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Live Export

During the last three decades Australia has exported over 150 million live sheep and cattle for slaughter in the Middle East and South East Asia. Livestock ships can carry 100,000 animals on voyages lasting up to three weeks.

Some two million animals have died in transit, while the remaining ‘survivors’ are subject to barbaric methods of killing and/or further transport, upon arrival.

Due to its international element, the Federal Government is responsible for this area of animal welfare. Pressure on the Government to stop live export is gaining momentum, with recent surveys showing that Australian’s overwhelmingly oppose it.


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