Thursday, 27 October 2011

Government e-petition

Thanet District Council has voted to support a Government e-petition
which calls on Parliament to reform laws regulating the export of live
farm animals.  

The motion, which was passed at a meeting of Full Council on Thursday
13 October, stated that the council would publish a link to this
petition on the homepage of its website, and would publish a statement
and press release which encourages citizens of Thanet and elsewhere to
sign the Government e-petition. 

As such, the council is encouraging local people to sign the petition
which can be found by visiting 

The Port of Ramsgate has been used for live animal exports since May
2011 and these shipments continue on a regular basis.  The council has
sought legal advice on whether it could lawfully ban the shipments but
was told it could not as Ramsgate is an ‘open port’.  

Requests from the council to instate a maximum journey time of eight
hours for live animal shipments have been sent to the government’s
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and the
Council Leader has also met with the Minister of State Jim Paice to
discuss the issue.

This petition now calls on the government to amend the law to allow
port owners to refuse, on animal welfare grounds, the export of live
farm animals.  The Harbours, Docks & Piers Clauses Act 1847 currently
makes it illegal to refuse a ship the use of a port if it is carrying
out lawful trade.  In addition Port owners cannot refuse the trade on
ethical grounds.

If the petition passes the 100,000 signature threshold, it will be
eligible for debate in the House of Commons. 

Leader of Thanet District Council, Cllr Bob Bayford, said: “We have
looked at legal ways of preventing this use of the port, but none of
these have worked.  We know that, in the past, other organisations have
taken legal action against the live animal export trade, but they have
lost, leaving them with huge costs and damages.  I am lobbying central
government as this is the best legal way to bring about change and would
encourage people to sign the petition in support.”

1 comment:

  1. At last it's on there. Still cannot understand why it took two weeks when Bayfords tantrum was on there the next day.


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