The NGO supports the promotion of high standards in animal welfare, but fears Labour’s newly launched consultation could turn many animals into mere political footballs.

The National Gamekeepers’ Organisation supports the promotion of high standards in animal welfare, but it fears Labour’s newly launched consultation, its Animal Welfare Plan, could run counter to serving the best interests of many wild, farmed and domesticated animals in the UK, by turning them into mere “political footballs”.

The NGO will be responding to the consultation that was launched by Sue Hayman MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

To read the Labour Animal Welfare consultation document click here.

The NGO knows only too well that many of those who earn their living from working with, and alongside, animals are highly attuned to the needs of their charges. The NGO will be calling on Labour therefore to listen hard to the collective experience of practical, animal experts, such as gamekeepers, before finalising its animal welfare agenda.

A spokesman for the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation said: “We stand for high standards in animal welfare, but fear that a confetti of vote-driven legislation could relegate many species to no more than the status of political footballs.

“The delivery of high welfare standards is already part and parcel of the gamekeeper’s working day, and the NGO will remind Labour to heed those who know animals best.

“An interest in animal welfare should unite communities in the UK, not divide them, and the NGO will spell out to Labour that it has a responsibility within society to respect the culture, traditions and the economy of the working countryside.

“NGO members are aware that excessive red tape and paperwork only act to keep them at their desks and away from their real priority, which is conscientiously attending to the demands of both wild and domesticated animals.”

Notes to Editors

The National Gamekeepers’ Organisation represents the gamekeepers of England and Wales, defending and promoting gamekeeping, gamekeepers and ensuring high standards throughout the profession. The NGO was founded in 1997 by a group of gamekeepers who felt that their profession was threatened by public misunderstanding and poor representation. Today, there are around 13,000 members of the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation.


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