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15 August 2011

The RSPCA and Animals Australia have ramped up calls for the Prime Minister to allow a conscience vote when Bills proposing an end to the live export trade are put before the parliament this week.

Unless freed from the shackles of their party lines, Federal politicians will this Thursday be forced to vote against their own beliefs and the wishes of their constituents who overwhelming want the live export trade to end.

“This is exactly what conscience votes are for,” said RSPCA Australia CEO Heather Neil.

“Ask any MP about their views on animal cruelty and they will tell you they oppose it. Yet both major parties have policies that support one of the cruellest industries this country has ever known.

“You cannot oppose animal cruelty and support live export and it’s a failing of our political system that MPs who are increasingly uncomfortable with the trade may be forced to vote for it to continue.”

Never before has the public and political support for an end to live export been so strong.

More than 20,000 Australians took to the streets in every capital city yesterday calling for an end to an industry that has subjected 160 million animals to cruel and brutal deaths over the past 30 years.

“This was the biggest rally for animals in Australia’s history and certainly exceeded all expectations. What it speaks to is the growing frustration in the Australian community about the continued support afforded this trade in the face of irrefutable cruelty against Australian animals.

“The live export industry has shown time and again that it cannot be trusted and is willing to supply animals to countries regardless of how cruelly they will be treated. 

“Without a doubt the eyes of Australians will be on our Federal parliament this Thursday. All we ask is that the Prime Minister allows MPs a free vote so they can not only be a voice for their electorates but for the millions of animals subjected to the cruelty of live export every year.”        


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