Wildlife and Small Institutions Animal Ethics Committee

Agriculture Victoria has established the Wildlife and Small Institutions Animal Ethics Committee (WSIAEC) for small institutions or organisations unable to maintain a viable Animal Ethics Committee (AEC).

There are two streams of access to the WSIAEC which depends on the type of animal use proposed – unrestricted access and restricted access.

How to apply for access to the WSIAEC

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Organisations or individuals wishing to access the services of the WSIAEC must apply to the WSIAEC through the Executive Officer. Access to the WSIAEC will only be granted where:

  1. The project activities will occur in the state of Victoria.
  2. If an organisation is applying, the organisation employs <10 full time employees involved in animal care.
  3. The individual or organisation has not previously been blacklisted.

There are two types of access to the WSIAEC, dependent on the type of animal use proposed – unrestricted access and restricted access.

Restricted access

Individuals only undertaking collection, taking, banding and marking of wildlife for research purposes. These applicants are exempt from licensing under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986 (POCTA Act), but must hold a research permit issued by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) in accordance with section 28A of the Wildlife Act 1975 .

Complete the restricted access form and service agreement. Send to WSI.AEC@ecodev.vic.gov.au

If you are unsure if your project requires restricted access, please contact environmental.research@delwp.vic.gov.au

Learn more information on exempt types of animal use.

Unrestricted access

Applicants whose proposed work includes activities that meet the POCTA Act definition of a scientific procedure and wish to nominate the WSIAEC to perform AEC functions for their licence. Complete the unrestricted access form and service agreement. Send to WSI.AEC@ecodev.vic.gov.au.

If you are unsure if your project requires unrestricted access, please contact sp.licensing@ecodev.vic.gov.au

If you are granted access you will receive an access approval letter. You cannot apply for a licence or permit unless you have this letter.

How to apply for project approval – Unrestricted access project

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If you have been granted access and received an approval letter, you may now apply for a licence (unrestricted access).

You must not commence obtaining animals or undertaking animal use activities.

Applicants granted unrestricted access to the WSIAEC must submit a licence request to sp.licensing@ecodev.vic.gov.au. Applicants must include their access approval letter as an attachment when applying for a licence.

For assistance please contact sp.licensing@ecodev.vic.gov.au

If a licence has been granted, applicants may complete a project application form and submit to the WSIAEC Executive Officer.

Applicants may submit multiple project applications once access to WSIAEC has been granted and a licence issued.

Applications received at least three weeks prior to the next WSIAEC meeting will be listed on the agenda for consideration by the WSIAEC.

To ensure the timely processing of project applications it is highly recommended that applicants read the Applicant Guide prior to submission.

Please submit your completed application to WSI.AEC@ecodev.vic.gov.au

The project application will be considered by a meeting of the WSIAEC.

Please note, depending on the quality and/or complexity of the project application, it may need to be considered at multiple meetings.

The project applicant may be required to provide additional information following a meeting of the WSIAEC.

Following the meeting, please allow up to 10 days to be notified of the outcome.

You must not commence obtaining animals or undertaking animal use activities unless formal notification of project approval is received.

How to apply for project approval – Restricted access project

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Prior to applying for a permit from DELWP, applicants must complete a project application form and submit to the WSIAEC Executive Officer. You cannot apply for a permit from DELWP unless you have a project approved by the WSIAEC.

Applicants may submit multiple project applications once access to WSIAEC has been granted.

Applications received at least three weeks prior to the next WSIAEC meeting will be listed on the agenda for consideration by the WSIAEC.

To ensure the timely processing of project applications it is highly recommended that applicants read the Applicant Guide prior to submission.

Please submit your completed application to WSI.AEC@ecodev.vic.gov.au

The project application will be considered by a meeting of the WSIAEC.

Please note, depending on the quality and/or complexity of the project application, it may need to be considered at multiple meetings.

The project applicant may be required to provide additional information following a meeting of the WSIAEC.

Following the meeting, please allow up to 10 days to be notified of the outcome.

You must not commence obtaining animals or undertaking animal use activities unless formal notification of project approval is received and a permit from DELWP is obtained.

If the project has been approved by the WSIAEC, applicants must submit a permit request to DELWP. Applicants must include their project approval as an attachment when applying for a permit. Applicants must not commence project work unless a permit has been issued by DELWP.

For assistance please contact environmental.research@delwp.vic.gov.au

Useful resources and additional information

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An annual fee for access to the WSIAEC may apply depending on the type of access granted.

Individual project applications will be subject to a project application fee for all types of access. For information on fee structure, please see the guide:

  • Monday 8 February 2021
  • Monday 22 March 2021
  • Monday 26 April 2021
  • Monday 7 June 2021
  • Monday 19 July 2021
  • Monday 30 August 2021
  • Monday 11 October 2021
  • Monday 22 November 2021

Dates are subject to change.

For more information on the WSIAEC contact:

Agriculture Victoria
Executive Officer
Wildlife and Small Institutions Animal Ethics Committee
475 Mickleham Road
Attwood Victoria 3049

Email: wsi.aec@ecodev.vic.gov.au

Phone: (03) 8377 4572

Page last updated: 11 Jun 2021