Battersea statement about the Government's response to the EFRA report on the Animal Welfare Bill

Below is Battersea Dogs & Cats Home's statement about the Government response to a report from the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) Committee. This EFRA report scrutinised the Government’s draft Animal Welfare Bill.

A Battersea spokesperson said: “Battersea is pleased to see the Westminster Government reiterate its support for five-year maximum sentences for animal cruelty, in its response to the EFRA Committee’s report into the Draft Animal Welfare Bill.
 
However, the Government has provided no further clarity on how five-year sentences for cruelty, or the separate issue of reflecting animal sentience in law when we leave the EU, will be brought forward.
 
Battersea had hoped to see a clear timeline of when tougher sentences for cruelty will come into effect. So this brief statement is disappointing, especially as there is overwhelming public and cross party political support for the measure.
 
Furthermore Battersea welcomed the EFRA Committee’s recommendation to separate the two issues of cruelty sentencing and respecting animal sentience into two distinct Bills, to allow both to proceed effectively. We feel that combining the two is likely to unnecessarily delay the process of passing tougher sentences for animal cruelty into law.
 
We now look to the Government to progress its commitment to five-year sentences and set out plans at its earliest convenience, to reassure the many tens of thousands of people who have joined Battersea in campaigning for this much needed change.”