Animal cruelty whistle blowers are not criminals

Greens MLC Lynn MacLaren says that a proposed new Federal law aiming to penalise activists for filming animal cruelty on farms criminalises the wrong people.

“So often, it is undercover investigators and whistleblowers who have uncovered animal cruelty, in many cases leading to prosecutions,” Ms MacLaren said.

“The majority of farmers love and they care for their animals, but when animals suffer sometimes it takes an honest witness to bring it out into the open; the RSPCA cannot be in all places at all times.

“As Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon has stated, Senator Back’s claim that this Bill is about protecting biosecurity is misleading; farms with good animal husbandry practices do not tend to invite a need for whistleblowers.

“Government should be focusing on how to end animal cruelty rather than targeting the people who expose it – such as requiring mandatory CCTV in all abattoirs, slaughterhouses, poultry and game meat establishments.

“This measure is already required by several European supermarket chains of their suppliers.

 “The Greens have introduced a Bill in NSW for mandatory CCTV on farms and we are investigating whether similar legislation in WA might help animal welfare.”