Preventing Animal Cruelty
Animals are emotionally intelligent, sentient beings that experience a range of feelings from pain to boredom to happiness. Cruelty to animals is akin to cruelty to humans in terms of the suffering experienced by the victim and the brutality of the perpetrator.
It is no surprise that those who engage in animal abuse often also engage in partner, child and elder abuse and are generally more violent in the community. Yet punishments for animal cruelty don’t reflect the severity of the crime with NSW having some of the lowest penalties in the country. Following lead from Animal Justice Party MLC Emma Hurst, the government introduced a bill to increase maximum penalties to better reflect the severity of these crimes. I spoke in favour of the bill, welcoming recognition of the magnitude of animal abuse offences courts now having the tools to impose penalties in line with community attitudes towards animal cruelty.
My speech: > HERE.
I also congratulate environment minister Matt Kean and Animal Justice Party MLC Emma Hurst for the historic regulations that will phase out and prevent future dolphinariums in NSW. Dolphins are highly sentient creatures that can live up to 50 years, and should not be kept in pools performing tricks.