Media release, ACT Greens, 4 May 2011
The Government and the Liberal Party combined today to vote down a Greens’ Bill that would have addressed unregulated and unethical breeding and selling of cats and dogs in the ACT. The problem causes the abandonment, suffering and euthanizing of thousands of animals in Canberra every year.
“I can’t believe the Government and the Liberals would vote against these important animal welfare reforms and let the suffering of animals continue,” said Greens TAMS spokesperson, Caroline Le Couteur.
“The Government and Liberals today chose inaction, backed with a series of mistruths spun about the Greens’ Bill in order to justify voting down the reforms.”
“The Greens’ Bill had the support of the animal welfare community and the general community. Through our comprehensive consultation process, we received over 50 mostly supportive submissions. That is more than the Government received through its entire waste strategy consultation.”
“The Government pretended the Bill only regulated pet stores and would create a black market in pet sales. In fact, the Bill was almost entirely focused on the hidden world of animal breeding and animal selling. The Government has simply voted to maintain this situation.
“The initiatives Labor and Liberal voted against today include:
• Licensing of cat and dog breeders, and mandatory standards for breeding operations
• Mandatory desexing of pets on point of sale
• Improved animal cruelty laws
• A new system of microchip traceability to ensure breeders are known
• Regulation of the advertising of animals for sales
• Outlawing selling of cats and dogs in pet stores, markets, fetes and other problem areas.
“The Government’s spin about its own efforts on animal welfare are ridiculous; it can point to absolutely nothing it has done on this issue, despite years of rhetoric, promises and media photo opportunities with animals.
“Given all the broken promises, and their repeated spruiking of pet industry lines, we have no faith that the Government is genuine about reforms to protect animals,” Ms Le Couteur said.