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Political Parties and Animal Cruelty Issues

24 Jan

Parties


Political Views / General Election 2020


Find out where political parties stand on animal cruelty issues.

Fine Gael

Fine Gael has voted against proposed bans on foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circuses. It only agreed to a phasing out of fur farming after a majority of TDs from other parties joined calls for a ban. Fine Gael supports massive state grants to horse and greyhound racing – more than one and quarter billion euros since 2001, including €84 million for 2020. Three months after RTE Investigates exposed the shocking cruelty and killing in greyhound racing, party leader and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar declared in Dail Eireann that he goes to Shelbourne Park stadium and “I intend to go again”. Fine Gael’s Josepha Madigan has continued licensing hare coursing, despite a deadly, highly-contagious RHD2 virus threatening the future of the Irish Hare species. Simon Coveney (Fine Gael, Cork South Central) has admitted participating in foxhunting. During a Dail debate in 2015, during which he defended the cruel activity, Simon Coveney revealed: “I have hunted”. He included an exemption for hare coursing and foxhunting in the Animal Health and Welfare Act which gives hunters and coursers immunity from prosecution for what would otherwise be an offence of animal cruelty.

Fianna Fail

Fianna Fail has voted against proposed bans on foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circuses. In 2019, the party came out in favour of a ban on fur farming. The party supports massive state grants to horse and greyhound racing – more than one and quarter billion euros since 2001, including €84 million for 2020. In January 2020, party leader Micheal Martin said that, if elected, his party would “put pressure on” to try and save Enniscorthy greyhound stadium from closure – a track where, in the past five years alone, 90 greyhounds suffered injuries and 20 were killed by a vet.

Sinn Fein

Sinn Fein is not in favour of a ban on hare coursing or foxhunting. The party was previously opposed to coursing but reversed this policy. Sinn Fein voted against a proposed ban on coursing in 2016. In 2017, an Ard Fheis motion calling for the party to support a ban on coursing was narrowly rejected. In 2018, a motion was passed reaffirming the party’s opposition to “an outright ban” on coursing. Sinn Fein is not in favour of a ban on greyhound racing but it has voted against the massive state grants that are keeping greyhound racing afloat. The party is also opposed to state funding to horse racing and has voted against it. In 2018, party leader Mary Lou McDonald announced that Sinn Fein would support legislation to ban fur farming. Responding to correspondence from the Irish Council Against Blood Sports, Deputy McDonald stated: “After consultation with our Policy Department, I can confirm that Sinn Fein passed a motion at an Ard Fheis a number of years ago to ban mink farming. I am therefore happy to confirm that we will be in a position to support the legislation when it is introduced at second stage.”

Labour Party

The Labour Party has voted against proposed bans on foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circuses. In 2018, it came out in favour of a ban on fur farming. The party supports massive state grants to horse and greyhound racing – more than a one and quarter billion euros since 2001, including €84 million for 2020.

Green Party

In government in 2010, it achieved a ban on carted stag hunting (using packs of hounds). The party’s animal welfare policy states that “the Green Party is opposed to all blood sports, and will bring in legislation to end hare coursing, fox hunting, hare hunting and mink hunting”. The party will also “ensure that sufficient resources are made available to enforce existing laws against stag hunting, dog fighting, cock fighting and animal baiting.” Party leader Eamon Ryan (Dublin Bay South) has stated: “”I am firmly opposed to the practice of fox hunting and hare coursing which I feel cannot be defended on the grounds of preserving rural traditions or indeed any other conservation or rural development arguments.” Deputy Leader Catherine Martin TD (Dublin Rathdown) has assured ICABS that “the Green Party supports a ban on hare coursing – the Green Party has always been opposed to all blood sports and remains resolutely so.”

The Green Party is opposed to massive state grants to horse and greyhound racing and has voted against them.

The Green Party has also promised to: End badger-culling by snares and shooting and support alternative measures such as oral TB vaccination, Introduce regulations where necessary “to strengthen existing legislation, to increase penalties, and to make fines subject to attachment orders”, Prohibit the importation of any animals captured in the wild to be sold or kept as pets, Ban all non-medical animal experiments, including the use of toxicology experiments on animals for cosmetic botulinum toxin products, Prohibit the use of painful procedures without anaesthesia; experiments which subject animals to “severe and prolonged pain” will no longer be permitted. 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

Solidarity

Solidarity is in favour of a ban on foxhunting, hare coursing, greyhound racing and fur farming. Solidarity TDs Ruth Coppinger (Dublin West) and Mick Barry (Cork North Central) and Paul Murphy (Dublin South West) initiated the Prohibition of Fur Farming Bill that will phase out fur farming in Ireland and the party was also behind the Bill that led to a ban on wild animals in circuses. Solidarity TDs voted in favour of proposed bans on hare coursing, foxhunting, terrierwork, digging-out and ferreting. Solidarity is opposed to state funding of horse and greyhound racing and has voted against it. Solidarity TDs have attended protests against the cruel greyhound industry.

People Before Profit

People Before Profit is in favour of a ban on fox hunting, hare coursing, fur farming, terrierwork, digging-out and ferreting. People Before Profit TDs have voted in favour of a proposed ban on hare coursing. They are opposed to state funding of horse and greyhound racing and have voted against it.

People Before Profit’s Animal Welfare policies include: Introduce a complete ban on the hunting of wild mammals with hounds, Introduce a complete ban on coursing live hares, Ban fur farming and ban the sale of fur within Ireland, End badger culling by traps, snares and shooting and Increase financial support for animal welfare charities – https://news.pbp.ie/policies/animal-welfare-policy/

Social Democrats

The Social Democrats are in favour of a ban on bloodsports. In 2016, the party voted in favour of Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s bill which sought to ban hare coursing. Joint-leaders Roisin Shortall (Dublin North-West) and Catherine Murphy (Kildare North) have voted in favour of proposed legislation amendments which aimed to ban hare coursing, foxhunting, terrierwork, digging-out and ferreting. They also pushed for a ban on fur farming. The Social Democrats are opposed to state funding to horse and greyhound racing and have voted against it.

Independents 4 Change

Independents 4 Change TDs have voted in favour of proposed bans on hare coursing and foxhunting. They have voted against state grants to horse and greyhound racing and have been a strong voice in the Dail in calling for an end to bloodsports and fur farming.

RISE (Radical, Internationalist, Socialist, Environmentalist)

RISE is in favour of a ban on hare coursing, foxhunting, fur farming, etc. Condemning hare coursing as “an undeniably cruel and barbaric practice”, RISE TD Paul Murphy voted in favour of a proposed ban on the bloodsport. He is opposed to state grants to horse and greyhound racing and has voted against them. Along with Solidarity TDs Ruth Coppinger and Mick Barry, he initiated the Prohibition of Fur Farming Bill that will phase out fur farming in Ireland. With Solidarity, he also successfully lobbied to secure a ban on wild animals in circuses. He was a guest speaker at the ICABS/GREY2K “Greyhounds Around the Globe” conference in Dublin in December 2019. Referring to the campaign to ban greyhound racing, he commented: “I think we should be optimistic that we can win this in Ireland. 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 – that’s why there was the campaign of bullying and intimidation to get Buswells [Hotel] ditched as the [original] venue for the conference.”

Aontu

In 2019, Aontú party leader, Peadar Tóibín, confirmed that he and his party are in favour of a ban on fur farming. In June 2016, Peadar Tóibín voted against a proposed ban on hare coursing. In 2016 and 2017, he voted against the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund Regulations which granted €80 million/€80 million of taxpayers’ money to horse and greyhound racing. He did not vote for or against the funding in 2018 and 2019.

Speaking in the Dail in 2018, he noted that “massive damage has been done over the past 40 years to Irish wildlife”. “We know that modern society is particularly bad when it comes to diversity and its impact on nature,” he stated. “We currently see billions of tonnes of plastic in either landfill or in the sea, killing diversity there. We know that as a society, we are doing massive damage to the climate at present. We know this damages us because we have a symbiotic relationship with nature, the natural world is vital for human well-being and biodiversity is an urgent issue.”

Renua

During a November 2015 Dail debate, Renua founding member, and then party leader, Lucinda Creighton suggested that hunting be developed as an Irish tourism product – “I think we need to develop a lot more of our tourism industry around the horse equestrian sector generally – be it sport horses, be it the hunting sector, be it racing and so on. A lot of that can be integrated because often it’s the same people who are interested in all the different elements. I think there’s real potential there”. Lucinda Creighton lost her Dail seat in the 2016 general election and resigned as Renua leader in May 2016.

ACTION ALERT

Urge parties to pledge support for a ban on hare coursing and foxhunting and an end to state funding of greyhound racing. RED C opinion polls have shown that a 77% majority want hare coursing and foxhunting banned, while two out of three adults want the government to stop funding greyhound racing.

Find out the views of individual Election 2020 candidates on our special election page: https://banbloodsports.wordpress.com/2020/01/08/general-election-2020-candidates-and-animal-cruelty-issues/

Question candidates about where they stand on animal cruelty issues.

Please reject candidates who support animal cruelty and give your Number 1 vote to any candidate who pledges to push for an end to hare coursing, foxhunting, greyhound racing, etc.

#GE2020 #GeneralElection2020

Government grants to horse and greyhound racing: How TDs voted

17 Jan

The Irish Government has squandered one and a quarter billion euros of taxpayers’ money on horse and greyhound racing. Find out which TDs have voted for and against the funding.  

HOW THEY VOTED HGF 2016 TO 2019 copy

 

Irish Government grants to horse racing and greyhound racing 2001 to 2020

General Election 2020: Dublin 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 West (4 seats):

Joan Burton, TD (Labour Party, Dublin West) 

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

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

“There are a range of occupations, including those in the hunt sports sector, that some people may find objectionable for one reason or another. Other examples include aspects of the meat or fishing industry, or those related to gambling. In these cases, as long as the occupation is valid, the activity is not illegal and the internship offered complies with the general terms and conditions of the JobBridge scheme, the Department cannot preclude it from availing of the JobBridge.” Minister Joan Burton, 22 March 2016, in response to Dail questions from Ruth Coppinger TD and Clare Daly TD calling on Joan Burton to stop foxhunts from using the JobBridge internship scheme.

In March 2013, Joan Burton voted against amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to secure a ban on some of Ireland’s worst acts of cruelty to animals – foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circuses.

Jack Chambers, TD (Fianna Fail, Dublin West)

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

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

Ruth Coppinger, TD (Solidarity, Socialist Party, Dublin West)

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

“Initiated the Prohibition of Fur Farming Bill that is resulting in the phase-out of the farms and the Bill that led to wild animals being banned in circuses. Supports a ban on greyhound racing and blood sports” from Ruth Coppinger’s General Election leaflet, January 2020.

“Fur farming is cruel and needs to end. Solidarity’s [Fur Farming Prohibition] Bill is in the Dáil in June” from a tweet by Ruth Coppinger, 4th April 2019.

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

“Happy to support protest against hare coursing & other blood ‘sports’. Great to meet activists yesterday” Ruth Coppinger TD in a July 22 2016 tweet.

“Unfortunately I was only TD from [Dublin West] to vote against hare coursing. FG, FF, Labour and Sinn Féin voted against. #BanHareCoursing.” Ruth Coppinger TD in a 30th June 2016 tweet.

In a 2014 text message to ICABS, Ruth Coppinger confirmed her anti-cruelty stance, saying “I don’t support [foxhunting or hare coursing].” In a Dail Question on 15th May 2015, Ruth Coppinger TD challenged Minister Heather Humphreys on why she failed to sanction two coursing clubs which breached their licence conditions. The Dublin West Socialist Party TD asked Humphreys “the reason she intervened in the case of two hare coursing clubs and did not apply any sanctions, following alleged breaches of conditions of their licences.”

“If re-elected Ruth is happy to pledge that she will continue to stand for animal welfare and use whatever influence she has to improve animal welfare.” from a reply to the National Animal Rights Association, 2016.

In September 2015, Ruth Coppinger asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht “if she will report on investigations into breaches of hare coursing licences in the previous hare coursing season; and if she will make a statement on the matter”.

“In relation to the fur farm Bill: Just to announce that they have actually drafted a law – and it is in the queue of legislation, we’ve seen it – to outlaw fur farming” – Ruth Coppinger TD (speaking at the Greyhounds Around The Globe Conference in Dublin, 30 November 2019).

In December 2019, Ruth Coppinger TD condemned as “A DISGRACEFUL ATTACK ON THE RIGHT TO PROTEST” an injunction taken out by Shelbourne Park greyhound stadium against six individuals who have been peacefully protesting outside the stadium against the cruel greyhound industry. Deputy Coppinger called on the public to “Show your support for ‘The Greyhound 6’ – They have a court hearing on the injunction on 28th January.”

Cllr Paul Donnelly (Sinn Fein, Fingal County Council)

“I am opposed to blood “sports” and I find that term offensive. I would fully support a ban on these activities.” from an email to ICABS, June 2015.

Cllr Roderic O’Gorman (Green Party, Fingal County Council)

“I have always strongly opposed blood sports, as I believe there is no moral justification for setting one animal against another for human enjoyment. If elected to Fingal County Council I will use all available powers of the local authority to oppose blood sports”. Roderic O’Gorman, March 2014

In January 2012, Roderic O’Gorman, along with Green Party leader Eamon Ryan, were thanked for attending an anti-coursing protest outside the Department of Agriculture in Dublin.

Aengus Ó Maoláin (Social Democrats, Ongar)

“I am happy to categorically state my absolute opposition to blood sports, fox hunting, hare coursing, fur farming and I will use my platform if elected…to oppose their practise.” from an email to ICABS, 20 May 2019.

Leo Varadkar TD (Fine Gael, Dublin West)

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

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

In March 2013, Leo Varadkar voted against amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to secure a ban on some of Ireland’s worst acts of cruelty to animals – foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circuses.

Leo Varadkar voted against the Wildlife Amendment Bill 2010 which banned staghunting.

In November 2007, Leo Varadkar asked the Minister for the Environment “if he has decided to grant a licence for [the Ward Union stag hunt] and if he will make a statement on the matter.”

“I go to Shelbourne Park every Christmas. I have a very enjoyable evening. I intend to go again this year” Dail Eireann, 1st October 2019 (three months after an RTE Investigates documentary exposed the horrors of greyhound racing, including the killing every year of thousands of dogs who are not fast enough to win races). https://www.thejournal.ie/rural-tds-greyhound-racing-48328…/

Other candidates:

Cllr. Emer Currie (Fine Gael)
Edward Mac Manus (Aontú)
Peter Casey (Independent)
Stephen O’Loughlin (Independent)
Sean O’Leary (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

 

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

 

General Election 2020: Dublin South Central 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-Central (4 seats):

Senator Catherine Ardagh (Fianna Fail, Dublin)

“Yes [I am in favour of a ban on foxhunting and hare coursing].” Cllr Catherine Ardagh (Dublin City Council) in a tweet to ICABS, October 2014.

Catherine Byrne, TD (Fine Gael, Dublin South Central)

In June 2016, Catherine Byrne 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.

In March 2013, Catherine Byrne voted against amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to secure a ban on some of Ireland’s worst acts of cruelty to animals – foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circuses.

Joan Collins, TD (Independents 4 Change, Dublin South Central) 

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

“We should be STOPPING greyhound racing.”

In March 2015, Joan Collins asked the Minister for Agriculture “if he will initiate a new investigation and-or review into hare coursing, with a view to removing its exemption from prohibition under the Animal Health and Welfare Acts, and to bring Ireland into line with neighbouring jurisdictions, where it has criminal status”

“I will be supporting the [anti-coursing] bill that my United Left Alliance colleague, Clare Daly TD is working on.” 7 February, 2012

The office of Joan Collins TD has confirmed that the Dublin South-Central Deputy “is in support of a ban on live hare coursing”.

On 14 September 2011, Deputy Collins asked Minister Simon Coveney “his policy on hare coursing” and “his plans to ban this practice”.

On 27th March 2013, Joan Collins supported amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to outlaw hare coursing, foxhunting, terrierwork, digging-out, ferreting and fur farming.

In May 2013, Joan Collins TD said she would boycott the National Wax Museum over a foxhunting-related discount. In a complaint to museum management, she said that with most people opposed to bloodsports, offering a 10 per cent discount when a hunt is mentioned “may backfire on the museum”. “It’s a promotion of a cruel bloodsport which many people, including myself, find offensive.” she said. The discount was subsequently scrapped.

Cllr. Patrick Costello (Green Party)

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

Cllr Tara Deacy (Social Democrats, Kimmage-Rathmines)

“It’s appalling that in 2019 we still need to be having these types of conversations that fox hunting, hare coursing, etc is still seen as a ‘sport’. I fully support a ban on fox hunting, hare coursing, fur farming and would support others with the same view.” from an email to ICABS, 20 May 2019.

Cllr Rebecca Moynihan (Labour Party, Dublin City Council)

“Yes [add me to list of Labour Party politicians in favour of a ban on bloodsports]. I’m an animal lover.” from a tweet to ICABS, June 2015.

Aengus O Snodaigh, TD (Sinn Fein, Dublin South Central) 

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

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

On 24th March 2009, Aengus O Snodaigh, TD asked the Minister for Agriculture “if in the context of his responsibility for animal welfare and the legal protection of animals from cruelty, he will introduce legislation banning all blood sports including hare coursing and fox hunting”. On 10th March, 2009, he asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government “if he will introduce legislation banning all blood sports including hare coursing and fox hunting”.

Brid Smith TD (People Before Profit Alliance, Dublin South Central)

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

“I support Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s Bill as a small step towards a kinder and more humane society in all aspects, especially in terms of how we treat not just hares but all sentient beings. It gives us an opportunity to have a wider argument about our attitude in that regard. I welcome the initiative and thank Deputy O’Sullivan for bringing the Bill to the Dáil. The case has been made by many different groups here about the cruelty involved in hare coursing, which is undeniable and unbelievable. It is a very weak argument to claim that the animals do not suffer and that the tradition must be respected, and in most cases it is demonstrably false. There would be more honesty involved in this debate if those who oppose the banning of hare coursing would simply tell us lots of money can be made from it, both from the events they run and the gambling that takes place in the industry and, therefore, it is about putting the creation of profit or commerce ahead of other considerations and the terror and pain inflicted on defenceless animals…The hare population is in serious decline across the country due to habitat decline and other issues in addition to coursing. Hares are among the longest established native mammals on this island and one of the last living links to the previous ice age. It is amazing to think about that and it would be a real shame to lose hares.” Brid Smith TD during Dail debate on bill to ban hare coursing, 23 June 2016. See the full speech: Video | Text

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 am with you on blood sports. They should be banned.” from a tweet from Cllr Brid Smith to ICABS, 29 March 2014.

“I love animals and would be passionate if elected as a TD in supporting Animal Welfare and Animal Rights. I am totally opposed to fox hunting, coursing and fur farming.” in reply to Maynooth University’s Animal Rights Society.

People Before Profit’s Animal Welfare policies include: Introduce a complete ban on the hunting of wild mammals with hounds, Introduce a complete ban on coursing live hares, Ban fur farming and ban the sale of fur within Ireland, End badger culling by traps, snares and shooting and Increase financial support for animal welfare charities – https://news.pbp.ie/policies/animal-welfare-policy/

Other candidates:

Richard Murray (Independent)
Selina Irvine (National Party)
Alan Kerrigan (Independent)
Sean O’Leary (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

 

General Election 2020: Dublin Rathdown 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 Rathdown (3 seats):

Cllr Shay Brennan (Fianna Fail, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council)
“Naturally I oppose cruelty to animals” from a tweet to ICABS, 12th August 2014.

Cllr Lettie McCarthy (Labour, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown)

“I have the greatest respect for animals and oppose all cruelty.” from an email to ICABS, April 2014. In November 2014, she voted against a council motion which described urban foxes as a “problem” and which called for action to be taken to deal with them. “I couldn’t support this motion if it meant culling foxes or killing foxes,” she said.

Josepha Madigan TD (Fine Gael, Dublin Rathdown)

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

As Minister for Culture and Heritage, Josepha Madigan has refused to stop licensing cruel hare coursing, despite the cruelty and a warning that the Irish Hare species is “in trouble” with numbers declining.

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.

In an email to a constituent ahead of June 2016’s Dail Eireann vote on the bill to ban coursing, Josepha Madigan claimed that hare coursing is “an integral part of the sporting year” and that a ban on the cruel bloodsport would have a “detrimental impact on rural Ireland”. Despite having received an ICABS report which details the hare injuries and deaths caused by coursing, the Dublin Rathdown politician also made the outrageous claim that the monitoring of coursing meetings by National Parks and Wildlife Service staff “has proved effective in ensuring that the welfare of the hare is protected”. Our report detailed hares hit, mauled, injured and killed by greyhounds on coursing fields around the country. It also includes information on hares injured so severely, they had to be treated or put to sleep by vets. Read Josepha Madigan’s full statement.

Catherine Martin TD (Green Party, Dublin Rathdown)

In June 2016, Catherine Martin 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 May 2018, Catherine Martin TD asked the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht “if, in view of expert reports that hare numbers have significantly reduced here, she will consider a suspension of all hare hunting and use of wild hares in coursing in order that the population can regrow.”

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

“I commend Deputy O’Sullivan for bringing this Bill to the House and look forward to a time when these barbaric practices are outlawed in Ireland. The Green Party has always been opposed to all blood sports and remains resolutely so. Needless to say the Green Party will be supporting this Bill…To be absolutely clear, hare coursing is a brutal ordeal. Before the hares experience this ordeal, they are trapped and trained which is cruel enough. They are solitary creatures and keep to themselves in the wild, so keeping them in an enclosure causes significant stress and fear. Hare coursing involves the terrorising of one animal by another animal as a so-called sport, all the while being watched as entertainment. Not only are these timid and delicate creatures terrified and brutalised in this practice, they often suffer severe injuries and death. The hare is a brittle-boned creature and its internal injuries cannot heal. Injured hares have to be put down.” Catherine Martin TD during Dail debate on bill to ban hare coursing, 23 June 2016. See the full speech: Video | Text

“Absolutely!!” – response from Cllr Catherine Martin to an ICABS tweet asking “are you in favour of a ban on cruel hare coursing and foxhunting?”. 12th August 2014.

Cllr Sorcha Nic Cormaic (Sinn Fein, Dun Laoghaire Rathdown)

In November 2014, she voted against a council motion which described urban foxes as a “problem” and which called for action to be taken to deal with them.

Senator Neale Richmond (Fine Gael)

“No I’m not [in favour of a ban on hare coursing and foxhunting] but it needs to regulated and monitored.” from a tweet from Cllr Neale Richmond (Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council) to ICABS, May 2014. In response, ICABS stated “Regulated and monitored animal cruelty is still animal cruelty. There is no place for animal cruelty in modern Ireland.”

Shane Ross TD (Independent, Dublin Rathdown)

In June 2016, Shane Ross 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 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.

“A Fáilte Ireland spokesman said that, following concerns raised by Minister for Sport and Tourism Shane Ross following the RTÉ broadcast, both they and Tourism Ireland met with the greyhound board last week ‘to convey to them that the promotion of greyhound racing will not feature in tourism marketing campaigns domestically and overseas’.” from “Board shocked and disappointed at Tourism Ireland decision to stop promoting greyhound racing”, Irish Examiner, September 30, 2019.

“Here I am with Maximus, a greyhound who was used for live hare coursing before being abandoned due to his age and possibly injury. Luckily he was rescued by Astrid, the owner of The Dutch Bike Shop in Goatstown. I am very worried about the fate of greyhounds in this country, the RTÉ One Investigates programme on greyhounds was shocking and I am determined to make sure that the industry is reformed rapidly so that never again will we see this sort of cruelty to dogs.” Shane Ross TD, Facebook post, August 21, 2019.

“At the weekly Cabinet meeting, Minister for Transport Shane Ross is understood to have repeatedly called on the board of Bord Na gCon to stand down. Mr Ross said that some of the practices uncovered in the greyhound sector by a recent RTÉ Investigates were ‘subsidised cruelty’ and that the Irish Greyhound Board should have acted earlier to safeguard dogs.” from “Entire board of greyhound body should resign, says Ross”, Irish Times, July 17, 2019.

Other candidates:

Eoghan Ó Ceannabháin (People Before Profit)
Liam Coughlan (Aontú)
Patrick Noonan (Independent)
Cllr. Deirdre Conroy (Fianna Fáil)

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

 

General Election 2020: Dublin North 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 North-West (3 seats):

Caroline Conroy (Green Party, Dublin North West)

“I am opposed to all blood sports” from a tweet to ICABS, February 2016.

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

Dessie Ellis TD (Sinn Fein, Dublin North West)

In June 2016, Dessie Ellis 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 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 March 2013, Dessie Ellis TD voted against amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to secure a ban on some of Ireland’s worst acts of cruelty to animals – foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circuses.

Cllr Paul McAuliffe (Fianna Fáil)

Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin has disregarded the cruelty and killing in the greyhound industry and attended a party fundraiser at Shelbourne Park stadium. On 21st June 2018, the Cork South Central politician was “guest of honour” at the “Dublin Fianna Fáil Social Night and Fundraiser” organised by Dublin Fingal TD Darragh O’Brien. Also in attendance were party colleagues John Curran TD (Dublin Mid-West), Dublin City Councillor Paul McAuliffe and Senators Gerry Horkan and Catherine Ardagh. The evening was promoted on the Fianna Fail website as “a great social event for members and supporters of the Party”. “Always wanted to own a greyhound?” the party asked supporters ahead of the fundraiser. “Well for one night only you can nominate a dog for just €50 which also includes entry on the night. If your dog wins their race, you win €70.”

Conor Reddy (People Before Profit)

People Before Profit’s Animal Welfare policies include: Introduce a complete ban on the hunting of wild mammals with hounds, Introduce a complete ban on coursing live hares, Ban fur farming and ban the sale of fur within Ireland, End badger culling by traps, snares and shooting and Increase financial support for animal welfare charities – https://news.pbp.ie/policies/animal-welfare-policy/

Noel Rock TD (Fine Gael, Dublin North West)

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

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

In June 2018, Noel Rock TD asked the Agriculture Minister about “his plans to ban fur farming here” https://www.kildarestreet.com/wrans/?id=2018-06-27a.544

“I have a strong track record of commitment to animal welfare and animal charities.” Noel Rock TD, Twitter, 4 July 2016.

“Very welcome news on the front of tomorrow’s Irish Examiner. It’s right that we ban fur farming in my opinion.” tweet from Noel Rock TD, 23 June 2019.

“I believe we should end greyhound breeding for racing” – Fine Gael TD, Noel Rock. In a series of comments posted on Twitter in June 2019, Deputy Rock added that he will be “working to do this within my party”. Responding to a call for him to also push for a ban on cruel hare coursing, the Dublin North West politician said that he has “never had a pro hare coursing stance” and that he is “happy to talk to anyone re progressing [a ban on coursing]”. https://twitter.com/NoelRock/status/1143614192580222982

Roisin Shortall, TD (Social Democrats, Dublin North West)

In June 2016, Roisin Shortall 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 June 2018, Roisin Shortall TD asked the Agriculture Minister “if his attention has been drawn to the fact that the United Kingdom, Austria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Norway and the Netherlands have banned commercial fur farming on the grounds of animal welfare; the reason for allowing the practice of commercial mink farming to continue here; if the phasing out of the licensing system for these three remaining farms will be considered”. https://www.kildarestreet.com/wrans/?id=2018-06-12a.2701

In January 2018, Roisin Shortall TD asked the Minister for Agriculture “the steps he will take to ban the practice of fur farming”. https://www.kildarestreet.com/wrans/?id=2018-01-30a.1129

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

“To ask the Minister for Agriculture and Food if his attention has been drawn to the large scale destruction of farm and other property, often running to thousands of euro, by the unauthorised use of such lands for the purposes of live hunting.” (From a Dail Question tabled in 2004)

On 27th March 2013, Roisin Shortall supported amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to outlaw hare coursing, foxhunting, terrierwork, digging-out, ferreting and fur farming.

Other candidates

Cllr Andrew Montague (Labour)
Ian Croft (Independent)
Stephen Redmond (National Party)
Niall Fitzgerald (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