But the new parliamentary session doesn’t have to be a year without action for animals in laboratories
Today’s Queen’s Speech set out the Government’s legislative agenda for the new parliamentary session, expected to run for the next year.
There were wide-ranging plans for new laws announced, covering everything from housing policy to energy. But sadly, once again, an absence of any proposals that would accelerate an end to animal experiments.
Animal protection appears to be low on the Government’s agenda. The Kept Animals Bill ran out of time in the last parliamentary session and although it has been carried over to this parliament, recent comments from Ministers give little hope that it will be prioritised or become law. We are part of calls from animal protection organisations across the UK asking for the Government to commit to passing these laws which could have a huge impact on cementing animal protection standards.
In a bid to take advantage of post-Brexit legislative freedoms, concerning legislation has been announced which would allow gene editing of both crops and animals for the purposes of food production.
Cruelty Free International will be working to ensure that getting rid of Brexit ‘red-tape’ does not mean that standards of animal protection are allowed to slip backwards. You can use our quick and easy tool to contact the Brexit Opportunities Minister, Jacob Rees Mogg MP, and ask him to seize the opportunities Brexit offers to move away from reliance on chemical tests on animals.
Whilst it is disappointing that we are looking at yet another year without legislation for animals in laboratories, there is still lots of action the Government can take. We are calling on them to Target Zero animal tests and put a strategy in place to drive an end all animal testing.
Public opinion is overwhelmingly behind us, with over 104,000 people uniting behind the petition calling on government for a concrete plan to Target Zero.
We are also calling for the creation of a ministerial post specifically responsible for animal-free science to lead an ambitious programme of work across government. This has been backed by a group of cross-party MPs who want to see government leadership on this issue.
While the Queen’s Speech is a missed opportunity, the new parliamentary session doesn’t have to be a year without action for animals in laboratories.