A personal message from Emily Fermor, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for Maidstone and The Weald.
The Hunting Act came into force in 2005 and bans the hunting of wild mammals, including foxes, with dogs. In Coalition Government, Liberal Democrats resisted Conservative attempts to relax the ban.
Commenting on the revelation that Theresa May would move to bring back fox hunting, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for Maidstone and The Weald, Emily Fermor said:
“I am shocked by the Conservatives' plans to repeal the Hunting Ban. Though I am a farmer's daughter, and grew up on a farm where shooting of rabbits was commonplace, I am passionate about animal rights. As such, I find the hunting of animals for blood sport inhumane and abhorrent, with no place in modern Britain.
I believe legislation to protect animal welfare should be moving forwards and not backwards. I would vote against any changes to the ban.”
Liberal Democrats believe in the highest standards of animal welfare. We will ensure that animal cruelty offences are given stronger penalties, ban caged hens, clamp down on illegal pet imports, improve standards of animal health and welfare in agriculture and ensure that future trade deals require high safety, environmental and animal welfare standards.
Liberal Democrats are concerned about the possible implications for animal welfare in the UK as a result of the Brexit vote. Approximately 80% of our animal welfare rules are part of European law. EU laws cover issues such as farm animal transportation standards, animal slaughter standards, consumer information laws, a ban on cosmetic testing on animals, etc.
- Introduce stronger penalties for animal cruelty offences, increasing the maximum sentencing from six months to five years, and bring in a ban on caged hens.
- Clamp down on illegal pet imports through legal identification requirements for online sales, and minimise the use of animals in scientific experimentation, including by funding research into alternatives.
- Continue to improve standards of animal health and welfare in agriculture by updating farm animal welfare codes and promoting responsible stewardship of antibiotic drugs.
- Ensure that future trade deals require high safety, environmental and animal welfare standards for food imports, including clear and unambiguous country of origin labelling for meat and dairy products.
To read more about the Liberal Democrats policies on animal rights, the 2017 manifesto can be read here: http://www.libdems.org.uk/environment.