Animal Welfare Bill Progresses

by Desk Editor on Tuesday, March 31, 2015 — 7:53 PM

A new animal welfare regime has taken another step towards law with the completion of the bill’s committee stages with an amendment to prevent animals being used for testing cosmetics included.

Minister for Primary Industries Nathan Guy said animal welfare was of major importance to New Zealanders. The select committee had put the Animal Welfare Amendment Bill into good shape and he acknowledged Green MP Mojo Mathers work on the issue.

Guy said Ms Mathers amendment to ban the use of animals for testing on cosmetic products was intended well, but was too broad and could apply to some medical work. As a result the Government would introduce its own amendment to implement the policy intent. He said there was no testing on animals for cosmetic products, but the bill would now make it clear it was unacceptable.

Trevor Mallard said New Zealand had an appalling history in animal welfare with factory farming and general cruelty to animals. The Government had taken far too slow an approach to dealing with the bill.

The bill was better than the regime currently in place, but it would depend on enforcement. Labour would also support the Government’s amendments on animal testing.

A number of speakers said the new laws had phase in periods that were too long around areas of factory farming, but Government MPs said these were necessary so farmers could adapt.

The minister’s amendments were accepted on a voice vote and the overall bill was reported with amendment on a voice vote.

MPs then began debating the committee stage of the Objectionable Publications and Indecency Legislation Bill
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