I receive emails every day from people concerned about animal welfare. For example, the number of letters I received about the ruthless killing of Cecil the lion in South Africa highlighted just how much animal cruelty issues matter to you.
Animals have a special place in the lives of so many people in different ways. The ill treatment of animals is seen every day in the press, but unfortunately there are many more cruelties below the surface.
As your MEP and a member of the Animal Welfare group in the European parliament, I’m determined to stand up for animal rights and campaign at a European level for more progressive views.
The abhorrent treatment of animals affects the whole continent - issues like the exporting of live animals to countries outside of the EU where they face cruel slaughter.
Here are just some of the actions I’ve taken:
- Holding a day for Tigers in Parliament to highlight this issue to all MEPs and ensure that we continue to make progress on this issue.
- Voting in favour of the EU joining CITES – that’s the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species, an international agreement between governments which aims to regulate trade in endangered species.
- Meeting with the RSPB in Cannock Chase who had expressed a concern for the Birds and Habitats directive which they felt could negatively impact the lives of birds, here in the West Midlands and beyond. I took their concerns to the commission and will continue to pursue the issue.
- I’m travelling to India, as Vice-President of an EU Delegation to meet experts working on tiger conservation in Asia.
Across Europe, the welfare of pigs is becoming a huge issue. The unnecessary removal of tails of young pigs, castration of male piglets, penning in of many pigs to small dirty places where they cannot develop motor skills or even see outside of such a cage is truly shocking.