Today (4th October) is World Animal Day, seeking to raise awareness of the plight of animals and to improve welfare standards.

Though the newspapers have been awash with headlines from the Tories announcing various animal welfare policies, most of these don’t go far enough. A ban on the ivory trade was introduced – but only for elephants, not walruses, rhinos, narwhals, warthogs, or other ivory-bearing species. CCTV was made mandatory for slaughterhouses, but with few reassurances on how footage will be monitored or enforced. Promises to ban live exports post-Brexit have now been watered down, so that it seems only live exports for slaughter, but not for fattening, will be banned. This is not to mention Gove’s decision to increase badger culling for more than 40,000 badgers, continuing to allow wild animals in circuses, and giving hunts a free pass under the guise of ‘trail hunting’.

The Labour Party recently released a comprehensive 50 Point Plan for Animal Welfare. This shows that we are the real party for animals, and would go far beyond the piecemeal improvements the Government is currently introducing.

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