The Australian Greens, a political party with a focus on sustainability, grassroots democracy, social justice, and peace and non-violence, has announced it will introduce a bill that bans all live export for slaughter.
The Greens bill, which includes sheep and cows, was motivated by footage released by animal activists in Israel, a press release says. The footage highlighted animal cruelty concerns as cows were unloaded in hot, crowded conditions and shocked with electric prodders. Dozens of calves died after unloading and on the ship.
“Live export cannot be made be made safe for sheep, cattle, or any animal. It is a business model built on cruelty and is simply incompatible with animal welfare,” Senator Mehreen Faruqi, Australian Greens Spokesperson for Animal Welfare, said in a statement.
“These episodes of animal cruelty are just the latest in more than thirty years of scandal, suffering and brutality in the live export industry. This is just business as usual for live exporters, especially now that they have a Minister who dismisses animal welfare,” the Senator, who is vegetarian, added.
Faruqi pointed out that the Greens have fought for a ban of live export for some time. “[I]ntroducing this bill is part of the campaign to make that a reality,” she said.
Animal Cruelty in the Live Export Industry
As well as a ban on live export for slaughter, Faruqi believes a ban on the export of animals for breeding could also be considered.
“The recent deaths of hundreds of Australian dairy cows in Sri Lanka has highlighted big problems with the live export of animals for breeding. This requires far more stringent safeguards, and perhaps even a ban as our New Zealand neighbours are considering,” she said, referring to a recent scheme between Australia and Sri Lanka intended to reduce the South Asian country’s use of expensive, imported powdered milk.
Sri Lankan farmers, who were promised “high-yielding, pregnant dairy cows,” voiced their outrage after 10 percent of the 5,000 animals that were shipped died, with many more diseased, the ABC reported.
The Greens Senator stated, “We make no apologies for standing up for the welfare of animals. We need a phased ban with a structural adjustment assistance fund which can transition the industry to the chilled meat trade.”