When animals in saleyards needed people to speak out last week, you more than delivered. With the ‘welfare’ Standards for animals in saleyards open for public consultation, over 15,000 people united to call on livestock industries to lift their game!
It’s hard to call any laws that allow baby animals to be bludgeoned to death, ‘welfare’ laws. But tragically for animals ‘inconveniently’ born at saleyards, the laws that should protect them instead allow for them to be bashed to death with a blunt object.
Over 25 million animals enter saleyards in Australia every year to be sold at auction to farms or abattoirs. And it’s not only the infants who get a raw deal. Sheep can be crammed into pens so tightly they cannot rise if they fall; severely injured and sick animals may be left to suffer; and animals are often left languishing in the hot sun for hours on end without any access to shade or water…
Australia’s livestock Codes of Practice effectively bypass some vital protections for farmed animals by allowing exemptions from animal cruelty legislation. These exemptions mean that animals in saleyards can legally be treated in ways that would warrant cruelty charges if you did the same to your pet dog.
So with the Standards and Guideline for saleyards under review and open for public consultation last week, it was vital that people called for change. And thanks to your efforts, the message was sent loud and clear.
A week ago industry bosses may not have appreciated just how strongly Australians care about animals — all animals. Whether we can nudge the deplorable saleyards standards in the right direction is yet to be seen. But because of you, when industry meets with Agriculture Ministers to ratify these Standards, they will at least do so knowing exactly what the Australian community expects of them.
This public consultation is now closed. But it’s not too late for you to create change.
Whenever animals are handled and killed en masse there will be stress and suffering. But while our laws may fail farmed animals, we still have the power to protect them. At every meal we make a choice about how to treat animals. Join the growing movement of people who are making their choices count for animals every day. Take the pledge to take animals off your plate today.