“For the many, not the few” is the Labour Party’s current motto. It has positioned itself as the party of the people rather than their masters.
As it turns out, though, it’s not just the party of the people. Because Labour’s latest “ground-breaking” proposals make clear that “the many” includes all souls on this good Earth.
No one gets left behind
Anyone who’s had the pleasure of watching the film Little Miss Sunshine will remember its motto. “No one gets left behind” is the phrase often yelled by the starring family as they attempt to bundle everyone back into their push-started van.
But it’s also a sentiment that pervades Labour’s latest animal welfare proposals. Revealed on 14 February (because who doesn’t love animals?), the plans set out what changes the party wants to make to animal welfare standards in the UK. And there are loads of them, which would affect numerous different animals in several different settings.
It would enshrine animal sentience – the notion that animals can feel emotion – in law. That’s something that the Conservatives also ‘want to do‘ yet voted against doing when they had the chance. Go figure. And Labour would make policymakers even consider the feelings of the often-overlooked lobsters (decapod crustaceans) and squids (cephalopods) of this world. That’s good, as we boil some of those poor fuckers alive.
Labour would also crack down on puppy farms, increase the penalty for dog-fighting, and revise welfare standards in zoos. It would ban imports of foie gras (which is produced in an utterly barbaric fashion), introduce a whistleblowing procedure for abattoir staff, and phase out cramped, inhumane sow farrowing crates. And Labour would strengthen the Hunting Act, end the badger cull, and totally ban the UK ivory trade.
In fact, there’s very little the party won’t do to improve the lives of animals in farming, laboratories, sport, the home, and the wild. It’s even appointing an Animal Welfare Commissioner. They’ll make sure policymakers consider animal welfare standards in legislation, trade deals and such.
Hip hip hooray!
You can usually tell who will benefit from any given policy by looking at who comes out for and against it. Animal rights groups like the League Against Cruel Sports and Compassion in World Farming have given Labour’s plan a thumbs up. So too has the British Veterinary Association (BVA). Some endorsements come with calls to go further, but overall Labour’s plan is a hit with these entities.
Landlords haven’t received the plan quite so well, however, as Labour proposes to allow renters to have pets (heaven forbid) along with homeowners. And the usual suspects [paywall] in our media have given the proposals the same old tired, snarky treatment.
But as an animal lover supposedly in a nation of animal lovers, I imagine most people are likely to agree with the endorsers. Because this animal welfare plan shows some respect for all those souls that feed, clothe, entertain, and heal us. It really is a plan “for the many, not the few”.
– Labour’s plan is open for consultation. Let the party know your views on its proposals here.
Featured image via David Mirzoeff
We need your help to keep speaking the truth
Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.
Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.
We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.
In return, you get:
* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop
Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.
With your help we can continue:
* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do
We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?