Friday 13th August 2021.
Dear members and supporters
It’s been a while since you’ve heard from us, we know. There have been a few changes!
The current pandemic has made it challenging to hold the usual events we do, as we can’t accurately predict how many people will turn up, or if the event will be able to go ahead. We are still here though, monitoring situations at home and abroad, commenting on media and industry stories regarding yet more atrocities for Australian animals, this time in Indonesia, Jordan, and UAE.
Our other focus is on the up-and-coming federal election, now expected to be sometime from March to May 2022. We have also been busy developing new branding to maximise our effectiveness (it’s been over a decade since the last one.)
Some of you will be aware that I moved to Tasmania in May this year. I am still doing the job I have been doing for the past nine years, as much of the work is done remotely, and what can not be, is undertaken by our volunteers. The committee has some fresh blood, and a new president, Rebecca Tapp. They are dynamic, enthusiastic, and have some great ideas. Our committee continues to meet regularly, and I join in via Zoom.
Here is a photo of some orphaned lambs I recently adopted – Buster and Lucille. Unlike the tens of millions of other Australian sheep, they will have a long, safe, and happy life.
Sadly, we will not be holding a quiz night this year, as the planning is quite demanding and time-consuming, and with the situation in other states thanks to the Covid-19 delta strain, we just feel everything is too unpredictable to hold that event this year.
However, the Human Chain will go ahead on Sunday 17 October, unless there are any restrictions on attendance numbers or social distancing, in which case we will also opt to defer for a year. We have had over 1200 people attend in the past, which is not ideal for an event that requires a Covid Plan. Please keep an eye on your emails and our Facebook page for any last-minute changes.
You might have read in the media over the past month, that there have been yet more ESCAS breaches reported in Indonesia (thanks PeTA), Jordan (the one Middle Eastern country we export to where a royal family edict requires animals slaughtered in government facilities to be stunned first), and UAE (thanks Animals Australia for both exposés). There is also another complaint lodged by Animals Australia regarding cattle being leaked from the supply chain in Indonesia, but this has not yet been reported on by the media.
In this, the tenth year of reporting and investigations of Exporter Supply Chain Assurance System (ESCAS) breaches, STILL we are seeing animals mistreated and being channelled out of supply chains and treated horrifically at slaughter. Surely, after a decade of ESCAS, a one-strike rule should apply to any country not strictly adhering to ESCAS regulations.
Fremantle has been quiet, with only four ships in total docking since the northern summer trade moratorium started on 1 June. Three ships loaded feed and continued to Portland, and one loaded cattle bound for Mauritius. Liberal MPs have recently called for a dramatic shortening of the 1 June to 17 Sept moratorium on live animal exports to the Middle East, stating that it can be done successfully. This is despite records from the last monitored shipment that left in that season, showing that sheep were subjected to days of wet-bulb temperatures of up to 34 degrees (sheep suffer from heat stress once wet-bulb temperatures exceed 28 degrees). So despite their claims that “only” 28 sheep died and the voyage was, therefore, a success, one can be assured that every single animal on board suffered to some degree with wet-bulb temperatures at that level.
In 2018, the Labor Party pledged to phase out live sheep exports in under five years. We urge you to contact your Labor MP and ask them to not go back on their word. With a federal election now expected in 2022, please remind them of what their constituents want – an end to all live export, but at the very least, a cessation of the live sheep trade; this would likely also see an end to any cattle being sent by sea to the Middle East, as it would no longer be cost-effective. Whilst the aim of our organisation is to end the trade in all live animals, we see the live sheep trade to the Middle East as the priority, both because of the length of the voyages, and the lack of stunning in all but one destination country. Animals Australia has made it easy for you – just click here.
We are so grateful for your unwavering support, which has been vital in helping us continue our important campaign to end the live export trade. Though we have experienced a drop-off in donations and memberships due to the global pandemic, we have a solid, strong community that stands steadfast and determined to stop this trade once and for all. Thank you for everything you do for the animals.
If you are unsure of whether your membership or monthly financial pledge is still current, or you wish to recommence membership or monthly donations or increase or decrease the amount, feel free to get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can assist. If you know you are no longer a member or have never been a member, sign up here, and if you wish to start or recommence monthly donations, which greatly help us fund our ongoing campaign, sign up at GiveNow here. You can pay via credit card or direct deposit; weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually, or make a one-off donation.
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For the Animals