Animal Welfare Reform
Animal welfare is a high priority for the Victorian Government. Animals are an important part of Victorians' lives.
Market research conducted in 2016 found that:
- 98% of Victorians said protecting the welfare of animals was important or very important to them
- 75% felt the welfare of animals should be better protected. They identified education, strong laws and penalties and strong monitoring and compliance as the best way to do this.
Action Plan for Animal Welfare
In September 2016, the Draft Action Plan for improving the welfare of animals in Victoriawas developed in partnership with the Animal Welfare Advisory Committee and released for public comment.
Consultation with key stakeholders and the Victorian community is informing the development of a final Action Plan, which is due to be released in late 2017. The final Action Plan will be Victoria's first-ever strategic plan for improving animal welfare.
The submissions and feedback provided strong support for the proposed action areas, in particular reform of Victoria's animal welfare laws. As a result, the Hon Jaala Pulford, Minister for Agriculture, has asked that the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources commence a review of Victoria's animal welfare legislation.
Victoria's animal welfare legislation
The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986 (POCTAA), Victoria's primary animal welfare legislation, is over 30 years old, outdated in parts and its complex structure creates difficulties for regulators to administer and for stakeholders to understand their requirements. POCTAA does not meet community and market expectations regarding an acceptable quality of life for animals, and is unable to easily adapt with gains in scientific knowledge.
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Animal Welfare contacts: