Animal protection laws have been set up to fail - but the solution is simple, and it starts with a Minister for Animal Protection.
Step 1: A Minister for Animal Protection
Animal protection laws are failing because they are under the control of the Agriculture Minister, who faces an inherent conflict: to both promote animal protection and promote the industries that use and abuse animals.
The portfolio for animal protection must be moved away from the Agriculture Minister, to a Minister for Animal Protection who can oversee animal cruelty laws and their enforcement without this conflict of interest.
Step 2: Fully funded enforcement agencies
The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act is the only piece of legislation in NSW that requires fundraising from the public to be enforced. Right now, the Government only covers 6% of the RSPCA’s enforcement costs for this piece of legislation, and they are forced to fundraise from the public to make up the rest.
Our enforcement agencies must to be fully funded by Government to investigate and successfully prosecute acts of animal cruelty.
Step 3: An Independent Office of Animal Protection
An Independent Office of Animal Protection must be established to oversee and ensure that the enforcement of animal protection laws is fully funded. This office must be independent, and free from any conflict of interest or influence by animal agribusiness or other animal-use industries. The Office would be charged with reviewing laws to ensure they match community expectations and the latest science around animal protection.