Great News! The Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill has come one step closer to becoming enshrined in UK law. To be passed, it must go through different stages of debate and scrutiny in both the Houses of Lords and Commons. The second reading in the House of Commons took place on 18 January, and it passed to the committee stage.
Thank you to all the MPs who spoke in favour of the bill and the thousands of PETA supporters who urged their MPs to attend the debate!
When We Speak Out, They Listen
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. … Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
– Margaret Mead
The Better Deal for Animals coalition – a group of over 50 animal protection organisations, including PETA – rallied to encourage their many supporters to contact their MPs, urging them to attend the debate and show support for the bill.
Our voices were heard! The bill received cross-party backing, and several MPs mentioned the tremendous support their constituents had shown for the bill:
“It is no exaggeration to say that I am contacted daily by constituents on one aspect or another of animal welfare.”
– Emma Hardy, MP, Kingston upon Hull West and Hessle (Lab)
“There is overwhelming public demand for sentience legislation.”
– Jo Churchill, MP, Bury St Edmunds (Con)
“I thank the campaigners and members of the public who have emailed MPs, signed petitions and kept pressing.”
– Kerry McCarthy, MP, Bristol East (Lab)
What Is the Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill?
Anyone who has spent time with an animal knows that they are sentient beings. And the science backs this up, too. Yet, current UK law does not recognise this fact.
The Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill seeks to rectify this. If enshrined in law, it will legally recognise that animals are living, feeling beings with complex thoughts and emotions, each able to experience pain, fear, love, and joy. It will require that the UK government consider the welfare needs of animals as sentient beings when making and implementing policies – which could help protect them from abuse or harm.
Now that the bill has passed the second reading, the next step is the committee stage. If you’d like to be kept informed about the progress of this bill and get involved in our future campaign efforts, subscribe to our e-news!
Help Create Change
When we speak out for animals, our voices are heard and change happens. Use your voice now and tell the government to act on its Action Plan for Animal Welfare: