Animal Welfare Conference Update – 16th May

Just writing to update on Simon Coveney’s Animal Welfare Conference, in Dublin Castle on 16th May 2014. Just last week news of it flew round facebook, and rescues and individual animal welfarites were all a bit concerned that we’d heard nothing about it. There was very little to be found on the internet apart from the announcement in early March.

Sarah from Cats Aid in Dublin looked into it and got feedback today. So …

It looks like the SPCAs have received invites last week. And those in receipt of the Agriculture Department’s funding will be invited soon – the invites just haven’t gone out yet. Hopefully invites will go out to other interest groups such as Feral Cats Ireland, ARAN and ICABS, but that’s not for definite. And it would nice if interested individuals (such as ME!) could also go. It’s entitled a “Conference” after all, and conferences are all about discussion and consultation. In Coveney’s words:

This is a major new step in animal welfare legislation in Ireland and I think it will be important to introduce and explain what is happening to many of those involved.

So we are waiting with baited breath to see how much notice is given to the busy animal welfare groups (just when kitten season starts) and who else might be on the list.

9/4/14 Update – Limerick Feral Cats just received their invite – so invites are on their way! Have you received yours?

Thanks so much to Sarah for letting me know what she found out. And for finding the information out in the first place!

Billy also added that “all the dept vets at the dvos and dept vet labs as well as the county council vets and any vets in private practice that are in the association all get invites to these conferences”. So it’s going to be pretty busy. I don’t know if any of these guys have received invites yet. Thanks for the info Billy!

What You Can Do

Attend the Conference

If you’d like to attend the Conference itself I see no harm in writing to the minister to express your interest. I have no idea how many places are available, but I’d suspect they’re faily limited unfortunately. But if there’s no space for you at the Conference, there’s certainly space outside. And there’s several organisations calling on their supporters, and interested individuals generally, to attend peacefully. Find out more on their Facebook pages:

And if you know of other organisations making a call, do let me know and I’ll add them to the list.

Sign the Petitions

Sign the petitions, set up to be presented at the Conference:

AND, though not specifically for the Conference, still relevant:

Learn & Empower

Check out the legislation and see what you think. Compare it with the feedback given to the minister by more than 30 animal welfare organisations back in 2008 when the legislation was originally due. I’ve already made a start. And if someone thinks it’s worth it, and gives me chocolate, I’ll try and do more …

There’s a Animal Health & Welfare Bill Digest I’ve just found – heading off to look at that next!

Think & Question

What questions would you like to see asked? I’ve no idea what the format of the Conference will be, but there’s got to be a Question Time. I’d like to know:

  • The legislation seems more concerned with Animal Control, rather than Animal Welfare (eg. omission of the Five Freedoms and Duty of Care) – would the minister explain why that would be?
  • What is the rationale behind the exclusion of feral cats and animals involved in hunting, coursing and fishing from protection from animal cruelty?
  • Exactly how will enforcement of the legislation be enabled? How will it be better than before?
  • Do the ISPCA have any powers now?

I’m blatting these questions off the top of my head – there’s a gazillion more I could come up with. Before attending it would be a really good idea to think a bit more about what needs asking. I could probably find out some of the answers before the Conference and save some time. What would be the most important and relevant question for Irish animals? And what would have the most productive outcome?

Spread the Word

*Care* and *Share* people.

Network & Feedback

Find out all you can when you’re there and feedback to your friends, family, acquaintances and The World!!! I definitely need someone to let me know how it goes as I *sob* can’t make it! I’ve one of my BFF coming over from the UK on that day (sod’s flaming law) and, since I haven’t seen her in a few years AND she’s only staying a few days, she gets priority. If she was staying a week I’d consider leaving her at the airport till I get back but, in the circumstances …

Related Links

Posted in ARAN, Feral Cats Ireland, ICABS, Legislation.

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  1. Pingback: Animal Welfare Conference - Invites Are Out - Animal Advocacy

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