Labour has long been the party of animal welfare. Our record, which includes introducing the Hunting Act and Animal Welfare Act, is something we should be hugely proud of as a party. Our Labour values demand we treat the animals with which we share the planet in a humane and compassionate way.
Labour is committed to continuing this legacy by driving forward an ambitious, common-sense plan that ensures no animal suffers unnecessary pain, informed by up-to-date understanding. Earlier this year my colleague Sue Hayman released Labour’s Animal Welfare Manifesto. It contains a huge range of popular policies to promote the highest level of care for domestic animals, improve welfare for animals used in sport and research and increase efforts to protect wild and marine animals, including:
- Strengthening the ban on foxhunting;
- Giving tenants the right to keep pets;
- Enshrining animal sentience in law;
- Ending the badger cull;
- Ending the live export of animals for slaughter;
- Banning trophy hunting imports;
- Banning pet primates;
- The inclusion of wild animals in the increase in maximum sentencing for animal cruelty;
- Banning the sale and use of snares and glue traps;
- Working with international partners to stop the return of commercial whaling;
- Reviewing the use of the whip in horse racing.
This week Labour also announced a £4.5 million funding boost to fight hare coursing, fox hunting and other wildlife crimes. The plans will double the number of police officers tasked to prosecute wildlife crimes from the current 88 to 170, increasing the capability of rural crime units to prosecute wildlife crime. The new wildlife crime officers will not reduce allocations to frontline policing.