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Scotland for Animals

Scotland for Animals contacted the prospective candidates for this Thursday's by-election for their views on animal issues. We had a disappointing response to say the least with only Independent candidate Mikey Hughes and David Doherty of the Scottish Greens responding.

the questions we asked were:
Will you call for a public inquiry into the validity of animal testing?

Will you call for increased funding for non-animal research methods?

Will you call for legal changes to ensure that police/ judiciary recognise the link between animal abuse and violence towards humans, especially women and children and for lengthy prison sentences to be introduced for crimes against animals to curb this?

Will you call for the installation of CCTV by law in slaughterhouses, farming units and all other places where animals are used in commercial/ research activities in Scotland to ensure that animal welfare legislation is adhered to?

Will you call for a ban on religious slaughter?

Will you call for compulsory labelling of religious slaughter products?

Will you call for the strengthening of the current ban on hunting with dogs in order that it be properly enforced?

As MP's state that the largest single issue that constituents contact them about is animal welfare will you pledge to devote a substantial amount of your time to introducing or amending legislation to fully protect animals?


We are deeply concerned with the fact that the vast majority of candidates in this election have chosen to ignore requests for where they stand on these issues, we can only assume that animal welfare is low on their list of priorities.


Those who declined to answer are:


Willie Bain- Scottish Labour Party


David Kerr- Scottish National Party


Ruth Davidson- Scottish Conservative and Unionist


John Smeaton- Jury Team


Kevin McVey- Scottish Socialist Party


Eileen Baxendale- Scottish Liberal democrats


Tommy Sheridan- Solidarity


John Swinburne- Scottish Senior Citizens Party




We would like to thank Mikey and David for taking the time to reply, here's what they said:


Mikey Hughes;


Hi

Mikey absolutely loves animals!

if you check out my policies you will see I have put lengthy prison sentences for people cruel to animals.
out of al the candidates I am the most animal friendly.
certainly the "pussy footed" soft sentences that people receive for cruelty to animals is not on, and life imprisonment for people cruel to animals or if you are cruel to animals you receive the same back, would be good.

I absolutely love animals!


David Doherty;


1. Will you call for a public inquiry into the validity of animal testing?

Any public inquiry would have to have a more specific nature than investigating the validity of animal testing in general. I am supportive of inquiries to prevent animal cruelty in product testing, as well as with the treatment of caged animals. As animals are capable of feeling suffering, legislation must reflect this in the treatment, transportation and nourishment of animals in their lifetime. As an MP I would certainly work for a reduction in the number of animal experiments.

2. Will you call for increased funding for non-animal research methods?

Certainly I would work to ensure funding for university research in general is a top priority, and I would work to increase funding for non-animal based research. I am opposed to cloning and genetic engineering of animals, as well as xenotransplantation.

3. Will you call for legal changes to ensure that police/ judiciary
recognise the link between animal abuse and violence towards humans,
especially women and children and for lengthy prison sentences to be
introduced for crimes against animals to curb this?

The treatment of animals often is a reflection of how our society treats humans - there are links between animal cruelty and human violence. I believe that there must be more formal recognition of these links, and more research is needed to investigate these links. There should also be a protocol for cross reporting of incidents of human and animal abuse, and an inclusion of animal welfare or humane education in the national curriculum.

4. Will you call for the installation of CCTV by law in
slaughterhouses, farming units and all other places where animals are
used in commercial/ research activities in Scotland to ensure that
animal welfare legislation is adhered to?
Certainly I would support a strong auditing procedure in such premises to ensure compliance with animal protection legislation, and CCTV systems could be a measure in larger facilities.

5. Will you call for a ban on religious slaughter?
Religious slaughter is part of many cultural practices, and I would not call for a complete ban on slaughter of animals as part of traditional religious custom. However, the treatment of animals in the process of slaughter must conform with the highest possible ethical standards under such circumstances.

6. Will you call for compulsory labelling of religious slaughter products?
As part of a Green Party policy on the regulation of animal derived foods, compulsory labelling should identify religious slaughter products as well as country of origin.

7. Will you call for the strengthening of the current ban on hunting
with dogs in order that it be properly enforced?
The present ban on hunting with dogs should be properly enforced as legislation with more resources committed to the police, as with other animal crimes.

8. As MP's state that the largest single issue that constituents
contact them about is animal welfare will you pledge to devote a
substantial amount of your time to introducing or amending legislation
to fully protect animals?
There are many wide ranging issues which the constituents of Glasgow North East face. In particular housing, unemployment, and fuel poverty are areas where, if elected, I would be devoting time as an MP. As a committed environmental campaigner, animal welfare is one of my personal concerns, and as an MP I would work with animal protection agencies to ensure legislation fully protects animals. This will require a substantial amount of my time, and the issue of animal treatment is linked to many other Green issues such as regulation of supermarkets, agricultural and fishery practices and use of animals in scientific research.


Please always take what candidates will do for animals into account when you cast your vote.


John

Scotland for Animals


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