Labor backtracks on Office of Animal Welfare

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Labor has backed away from its policy of an Office of Animal Welfare by refusing to back a Private Members Bill moved by Greens Deputy Leader Adam Bandt MP.  The bill would implement an ALP National Conference resolution to establish an office made over two and a half years ago.

Speaking in the House of Representatives this morning, Labor members said they would not back the bill despite Labor policy supporting an office and a backbench push in caucus on the issue.

“It is disappointing to see Labor backtracking on support for an Office for Animal Welfare. Labor is all talk and no action when it comes to animal rights. The Greens can be trusted to care for animals.” Mr Bandt said.

The Voice for Animals (Independent Office of Animal Welfare) Bill will establish an animal welfare champion to promote animal rights that is independent of government and the Department of Agriculture. Australian Greens animal welfare spokesperson Lee Rhiannon will introduce the bill into the Senate when it next sits.

“The Agriculture Minister Senator Joe Ludwig will struggle to explain to the Senate and his party why the government won’t back this bill as it replicates what was promised but never delivered,” Senator Rhiannon said today.

“The government is happy to talk the talk about animal welfare but when it comes to establishing an independent watchdog for animals it will walk to the election empty handed.”