Make CCTV mandatory for all slaughterhouses
We urge the government to make CCTV installation mandatory for all slaughterhouses, with selected footage independently monitored by welfare experts.
Animal Aid investigated nine randomly chosen UK slaughterhouses and found breaches of welfare laws in eight. Animals were shown being kicked, slapped, stamped on, beaten, punched, burned with cigarettes, and picked up by their fleeces and ears and thrown into pens. It showed inadequate, botched and multiple stunning, and the sadistic use of stunning equipment to ‘punish’ animals.
Neither the government-appointed on-site vets nor the slaughterhouse operators detected a single illegal act that we filmed.
Properly monitored CCTV would deter abuse, encourage best practice, help with staff training, and provide evidence for prosecutions.
CCTV won’t end slaughterhouse suffering, but it is an invaluable tool to help vets and welfare officers protect animals from gratuitous abuse and incompetent or negligent workers.
Government responseAs this e-petition has received more than 10 000 signatures, the relevant Government department have provided the following response:
The Government encourages the highest standards of welfare at slaughter. Both EU Regulation 1099/2009, on the protection of animals at time of killing, and the Welfare of Animals (Slaughter or Killing) Regulations 1995 (WASK), as amended, contain strict requirements to protect the welfare of animals being slaughtered. In slaughterhouses, these requirements are monitored and enforced by Official Veterinarians of the Food Standards Agency to ensure that animals are spared unnecessary suffering, distress or pain during the slaughter process.
Some of the undercover evidence has been gathered in premises which already had CCTV which implies CCTV may not be an effective monitoring tool though it could be helpful as a verification tool for audit purposes after a welfare breach has taken place in a particular slaughterhouse. The Government is not convinced of the need for further legislation at this time but will be keeping the need for CCTV under review in the context of the new monitoring requirements required under Regulation 1099/2009 which came into direct effect in January 2013.
This e-petition remains open to signatures and will be considered for debate by the Backbench Business Committee should it pass the 100 000 signature threshold.
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