MEDIA RELEASE: “Animal cruelty will remain the status quo”: the NSW Government’s rejection of an Independent Office of Animal Protection is a fatal blow for animals, says Animal Justice Party MP, Mark Pearson

The state government has condemned millions of animal to needless suffering by rejecting a key finding of a recent parliamentary inquiry into NSW’s animal cruelty laws, NSW Upper House MP for the Animal Justice Party, Mark Pearson has said.

“The government’s rejection of this recommendation will impact millions of animals – from the blind, lame cows in feedlots to the abused dogs in the greyhound industry,” Mr Pearson, who was chair of the inquiry, said.

“The RSPCA currently successfully prosecutes less than 1% of complaints they receive, and that tells you everything you need to know about the effectiveness of having under-resourced charities enforce animal cruelty laws.”

Another significant issue raised during the inquiry was the inherent conflict of interest in having the same government department responsible for both animal welfare and the use of animals for agricultural production purposes.

“It’s this conflict of interest that ensures the slaughter of bobby calves, the shredding of day-old chicks, and the invasive procedures done without pain relief is routine industry practice,” Mr Pearson said.

“This is the status quo that will continue without an overhaul of the entire animal welfare framework, and it’s the status quo we know the community does not accept,” Mr Pearson said.

To date, the Animal Justice Party NSW had collected over 7,000 signatures in support of an Independent Office of Animal Protection (IOAP).

Mr Pearson has vowed to continue campaigning for an IOAP.

“Even though the government of the day has rejected the recommendation, the idea of an IOAP will remain relevant, and the tabling of our report has set a historical precedent,” he said.

“Future governments and other organisations will draw upon our findings and regard them as rational and just, and condemn the Berejiklian government’s indifference to the suffering of animals.”

The government’s response to the inquiry can be read in full here.

The committee’s findings and recommendations can be read in full here.