The RSPCA has today welcomed the Australian Labor Party’s commitment to closing a loophole in Australia’s live export regulations that denies protection to thousands of Australian animals exported for purposes other than slaughter.
“The RSPCA has long called for breeding and dairy animals to be covered by the Exporter Supply Chain Assurance Scheme (ESCAS), so it’s heartening to see political leadership to address the community’s concerns,” said RSPCA Australian Senior Policy Officer Dr Jed Goodfellow, responding to the announcement made by Shadow Agriculture Minister Joel Fitzgibbon yesterday.
“The RSPCA calls on leaders from all sides of politics to work together to expand and improve ESCAS as quickly as possible to better protect animals live exported for breeding and dairy production overseas.
“Since the tragic news of dead and dying dairy cows exported to Sri Lanka broke yesterday morning, thousands of Australians have expressed their fury at the lack of protections offered to these animals.
“Exporters have a duty of care to animals they’re sending overseas whether those animals are intended for slaughter, breeding, or dairy production. That duty doesn’t stop at the point at which they get paid.
“Unfortunately, history shows that we need comprehensive and rigorous regulations to ensure animal welfare will be prioritised by these companies, otherwise we will continue to see sick, dying and dead animals at the hands of the live export industry,” said Dr Goodfellow.