General Election 2020: Dublin South West Candidates and Animal Cruelty Issues

14 Jan

Election 2020 where do the candidates stand copy

Political Views / General Election 2020

The views of General Election 2020 candidates in relation to hare coursing, foxhunting, greyhound racing and other animal cruelty issues. Please support candidates who pledge to push for an end to activities involving cruelty to animals.

Dublin South-West (5 seats):

Cllr Carly Bailey (Social Democrats)

The Social Democrats are in favour of a ban on fox hunting, hare coursing and fur farming. The party’s animal welfare policy states: “The Social Democrats strongly advocate animal rights and recognise animals as intelligent, sentient beings capable of complex thought and of experiencing pain and suffering…We are in favour of harsher penalties for animal cruelty” See the full policy at https://www.socialdemocrats.ie/our-policies/

Colm Brophy TD (Fine Gael, Dublin South West)

In June 2016, Colm Brophy was among the 114 TDs who voted against Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s bill which sought to ban cruel hare coursing.

In 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019, voted in favour of the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations which granted €80 million/€80 million/€84 million/€84 million of taxpayers’ money to horse and greyhound racing.

Sean Crowe TD (Sinn Fein, Dublin South West)

In June 2016, Sean Crowe abstained/was not present in the vote on Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s bill which sought to ban cruel hare coursing. The bill was defeated by 114 votes to 20 (with the remaining 24 TDs abstaining/not voting).

In July 2017, Sean Crowe TD asked the Minister for Agriculture “the number of animals that have escaped from fur farms here in the past five years”.

In 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019, voted against the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations which granted €80 million/€80 million/€84 million/€84 million of taxpayers’ money to horse and greyhound racing.

“I find [blood ‘sports’] to be a loathsome practice and the argument that they are in some manner a necessary part of traditional, rural life insulting to the intelligence. I would be delighted to support any and all legislation, which restricts, or bans these ‘sports’.”

Cllr Mick Duff (Independent, South Dublin County Council)
“I fully favour a complete ban on coursing and foxhunting” from a text message to ICABS, February 2015.

In 2010, Cllr Duff proposed a motion calling for a ban on the import and sale of fur which was successfully passed by South Dublin County Council. He also supported a motion to ban circuses with wild animals from public lands in South County Dublin and monitors dog pounds in the county.

Cllr. Francis Noel Duffy (Green Party)

“I am against cruelty to animals in all contexts. I would like to see higher standards of animal welfare in farming, harsher sentences for those who commit crimes against animals in a domestic context, and an end to the farming of animals for their fur. The law, as it stands, is wholly inadequate in dealing with crimes against animals and, if elected, I would support any legislation that improves standards in animal welfare.” Statement from Francis Noel Duffy, 2014.

The Green Party is in favour of a ban on bloodsports, including fox hunting, hare coursing, hare hunting and mink hunting. It also supports a ban on fur farming and an end to the Department of Agriculture’s cruel snaring and killing of badgers. See the party’s full animal welfare policy document at https://www.greenparty.ie/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Green-Party-Animal-Welfare-Policy_June-20151.pdf


John Lahart TD (Fianna Fail, Dublin South West)

In June 2016, John Lahart was among the 114 TDs who voted against Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s bill which sought to ban cruel hare coursing.

In 2016, 2018 and 2019, voted in favour of the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations which granted €80 million/€84 million/€84 million of taxpayers’ money to horse and greyhound racing.

Paul Murphy TD (RISE / Solidarity / People Before Profit, Dublin South West)

In June 2016, Paul Murphy was one of the 20 compassionate TDs who voted in favour of Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s bill which sought to ban hare coursing.

In 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019, voted against the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations which granted €80 million/€80 million/€84 million/€84 million of taxpayers’ money to horse and greyhound racing.

“In recent years, there have been many scandals in the greyhound industry. As part of its anti-doping programme, IGB has reported that 1% of samples tested positive last year. This is only the tip of the iceberg. Pharmacology experts, vets and many in the industry treat those official figures with understandable scepticism. IGB’s Morris report on doping has identified severe problems with anti-doping measures in the greyhound industry. The report found the national greyhound laboratory does not have facilities to test many of the drugs used to dope greyhounds. Another major scandal in the greyhound racing industry is that of the dogs behind the scenes that never make it to the tracks. It is estimated that approximately 10,000 greyhounds retire from racing or, as is more common, are born but never make it into racing. Approximately 1,200 were homed last year, leaving 88% with an unknown fate. It must be investigated. We have had high profile cases of dogs being cruelly killed with little or no consequence for those caught. In 2014, there were only 15 investigations into welfare incidents in the industry. It is clear that the IGB and the Government is turning a blind eye to the cruelty that exists. Furthermore, we see attempts by the top of the industry to establish new markets in east Asia, China in particular. It is clear that exports to Macau and those involving any states with poor animal rights records and no proper protection for animals should be banned. We have argued for this and will continue to do so in debate on the legislation due on the question of the greyhound industry. We will oppose the motion for these reasons and because it places further profit at the core of the industries and does nothing to tackle the cruelty and corruption involved.” Paul Murphy TD speaking during a Dail debate on the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations 2016, 14 December 2016. Video | Text

“Hare coursing is an indefensible practice. It is an undeniably cruel and barbaric practice especially considering the fact that our near neighbours – Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England – have all moved to ban hare coursing. Ireland is one of three jurisdictions left that maintains it. To defend it and to advocate for it in such a positive fashion is shocking. I thank Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan for bringing the Bill forward. It is very good that we have it but obviously it is very disappointing that it looks like it may not pass. However, the Anti Austerity Alliance is very much in support of the Bill…Hare coursing has a negative impact on this country’s wildlife. The Irish hare is one of our most longstanding native mammals, having survived the ice age, but there are now examples of local extinctions and a fragmented population across the country. The Irish hare as a species is under pressure from human activity, primarily farming, and the last thing it needs is to be captured and chased by greyhounds in enclosures for the enjoyment, dubious though it may be, and profit of a few.” Paul Murphy TD during Dail debate on bill to ban hare coursing, 23 June 2016. See the full speech: Video | Text

The campaign against hare coursing “is a campaign that [Paul Murphy MEP] fully supports”. from an email from Paul Murphy MEP’s office, February 2012.

As an MEP, Paul Murphy was active on many animal welfare issues at European Level. He highlighted the plight of the Galgos in Spain, banning the fur trade, etc

“The issue of the fishing of bluefin tuna is an issue that has come up in the European Parliament. Paul Murphy MEP and the Socialist Party oppose the fishing of bluefin tuna and have always taken a position of voting for measures to end the practice of fishing this endangered species. In the next period as the budget and the Common Fisheries Policy is debated in the Parliament you can be assured of Paul Murphy’s support for the protection of Bluefin tuna.” From a letter to ICABS from the office of Paul Murphy MEP, 13 August 2012.

He signed a Eurogroup for Animals animal welfare pledge, including “I will strive to ensure that animals are recognised as sentient beings in all legislation that comes before the Parliament and strive to ensure all existing animal welfare related legislation is properly enforced…”

Commenting on the costly court action taken by Shelbourne Park Greyhound Stadium against six peaceful protestors, Paul Murphy TD said that “the money they are using to pay lawyers to bring you to court to try to prevent the right to protest is public money [from the millions of euros in government funding the Irish Greyhound Board receives each year]…We will be putting very hard questions to the government – do they think public money should be used in this way to try and intimidate people and try and prevent people from protesting.” Speaking at the Greyhounds Around The Globe conference, Dublin, 30 November 2019.

“I think we should be optimistic that we can win this in Ireland,” Deputy Murphy continued, referring to the campaign to achieve a ban on greyhound racing. “The way you get a sense of that is by the behaviour of your opponents. If you weren’t having an impact, well then the greyhound industry wouldn’t be concerned at all. It’s precisely because you’re having an impact, because public opinion has changed dramatically on the issue of greyhounds in the last number of years, as part of a wider shift in public awareness around animals rights. That’s why there was the campaign of bullying and intimidation to get Buswells [Hotel] ditched as the [original] venue for the conference.” Speaking at the Greyhounds Around The Globe conference, Dublin, 30 November 2019.

Katherine Zappone, TD (Independent, Dublin South West) 

In June 2016, Katherine Zappone abstained/was not present in the vote on Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s bill which sought to ban cruel hare coursing. The bill was defeated by 114 votes to 20 (with the remaining 24 TDs abstaining/not voting).

In 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019, voted in favour of the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations which granted €80 million/€80 million/€84 million/€84 million of taxpayers’ money to horse and greyhound racing.

“I oppose fur farming, and all blood sports such as hare coursing and fox hunting, I believe we need better legislation and more resources to enforce the existing legislation to improve animal welfare in Ireland and I will pledge my support if elected for further legislation in this area.” from an email to ICABS, February 2016.

Other candidates:

Ciarán Ahern (Labour Party)
Philip Dwyer (National Party)
Cllr. Charlie O’Connor (Fianna Fáil)
Cllr. Deirdre O’Donovan (Fianna Fáil)
Ellen O’Malley Dunlop (Fine Gael)
Cllr. Sandra Fay (Solidarity)
Anne Marie Condren (Renua)
Colm O’Keeffe (Independent)

Contact candidates and ask them where they stand on animal cruelty issues.

If you are a candidate and wish to provide a statement outlining your views on animal cruelty issues, please email it to us at info@banbloodsports.com

Please support our campaign with a donation
https://www.paypal.me/banbloodsports

Help fund our “Ban Greyhound Racing” Billboards
https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-fund-ban-greyhound-racing-billboards

 

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