Animal Justice Fund Launched - Rewards For Cruelty Information

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22nd June 2010, 09:30am - Views: 1111





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                                             Media release

        22nd June 2010


                                                      



  Animal Justice Fund launched


A

five million dollar Animal Justice Fund (AJF) has been established by wealthy businesswoman

Jan Cameron to address the injustice faced by millions of animals in factory farms in Australia.  

The AJF will promote the cause of animal welfare through strategic litigation, public awareness

campaigns and the prosecution of persons or businesses who commit offences against animals

used in intensive farming or through commercial and/or recreational practices.   

To  be administered by Animals Australia, the AJF will conduct high profile public awareness

campaigns highlighting the treatment of animals in factory farms, whilst offering rewards of up to

$30,000 to industry workers for information that leads to successful prosecutions or significant

animal welfare outcomes as judged by the AJF.

Ms Cameron said,

"I was shocked to discover that some 500 million animals raised in factory farms in Australia

each year are denied the full protection of animal protection laws.  How can this possibly be

justified?   Just because animals are raised for food doesn't lessen their ability to suffer or our

ethical responsibility to protect them from harm.''

"I have funded the Animal Justice Fund because Australians don't realise that legislators have

been selective about which animals laws will protect from cruelty and which they won't.  To

compound the injustice, in many states, governments have limited the powers of policing bodies

to conduct unannounced inspections of factory farms despite the fact that these facilities can

house many thousands of animals," said Ms Cameron

The AJF will operate nationally with Ms Cameron providing five million dollars over five years to

achieve the following goals:

Objectives of the Animal Justice Fund

1.

Increase the reporting and investigation of animal abuse in intensive animal industries

and in other commercial and/or recreational practices.

2.

Increase the prosecutions of persons or businesses under Australian animal cruelty

legislation who commit cruelty offences against animals used in intensive farming or

during other commercial or recreational practices.

3.

Achieve greater legal protection for animals by bringing to public notice exemptions in

current laws, and through strategic litigation.

4.

Increase public support for law reform by bringing to public notice cruel practices in

intensive animal industries.

5.

Achieve legal bans on cruel practices such as sow crates and battery cages.

6.

Increase public awareness of cruel practices in intensive animal facilities so that

consumers can exercise an informed choice as to whether to purchase factory farmed

products. 


Animals Australia's Communication Director Lyn White is the manager of the Animal Justice

Fund.   Ms White, a police officer in SA for 20 years, has since conducted animal cruelty

investigations in South East Asia, the Middle East and Australia.   White has extensive

experience in evidentiary procedures and preparing files for prosecution. 

Lyn White said,

"The establishment of the Animal Justice Fund represents the most significant development in

animal welfare in the history of this country.   The AJF will provide representation for millions of

animals in factory farms in Australia through public awareness campaigns; through strategic

litigation and through providing workers with an avenue to express their concerns.''

Information obtained from informants will be referred where appropriate to the Barristers Animal

Welfare Panel (BAWP) for advice.  BAWP is a national unitary body of over 120 Australian

barristers whose objects include engaging in strategic and other litigation which advances

animal welfare. .

White continued;

"The fact that a private citizen has had to commit funding of this scale to provide animals in

factory farms with representation speaks to the failure of governments to protect these animals

from cruel treatment.    Australians just aren't aware that operators of factory farms are

exempted from the same duty of care towards animals expected of every other member of

society.   This can never be ethically justified.  

Ms Cameron's goal is an eminently reasonable one – for all animals, including those raised for

food - to be provided with legal protection from cruel treatment and a life worth living.   This is a

goal that we believe the vast majority of Australians will support and agree with.

I

am sure that as more and more Australians become aware of the treatment and conditions

factory farmed animals endure they will become as passionate as Jan Cameron, and use their

power as consumers to demand an end to cruel production practices and legislative change.''


Media contact:     Glenys Oogjes 041 431 2552








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