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10 November 2018
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PAN wants public to be allowed to feed stray animals

in News · 14-06-2018 15:31:00 · 0 Comments

The party for People, Animals and Nature, PAN, one of the government’s alliance partners, has submitted a bill in which it proposes local populations should be allowed to feed stray animals, and at the same time slammed the government’s principals of “investing in the sterilisation and treatment” of animals while at the same time “allowing them to starve to death”.

PAN wants public to be allowed to feed stray animals

PAN’s bill aims to overturn rules implemented by many municipalities that forbid the public from feeding strays.
The party argues that by allowing stray animals to be fed and kept healthy, public health and hygiene will be safeguarded.
“The vast majority of municipalities in Portugal establish, by means of their own regulations, the prohibition of feeding animals in public places, ignoring relevant circumstances such as the cases of colonies of cats controlled by municipal sterilisation programmes; why such feeding is being provided to animals (without endangering public health or hygiene of the site), or what motivated citizens to do so (for example, a hungry animal that was recently abandoned and has not yet been collected by the municipal services)”, the party explained in a statement.
A recent law brought into effect a new national campaign – the CED (Capture, Sterilise, Release) programme – which aims to resolve public health issues caused by stray animals.
“However, within this programme the public feeding of animals is still prohibited, at a municipal level, on the basis of the very same principle - public health”, PAN remonstrated.
The party believes the two principles strongly contradict each other, and “it will be manifestly contrary to the spirit” of the CED programme “to see municipal regulations completely ban the feeding of animals”, PAN stressed.
It summed up its position on the matter by stating: “We defend that it does not make sense for the State to invest in the sterilisation and treatment of animals, while at the same time determining that they should be left to die of hunger”.
It also highlighted “good international practices” which state one of the key steps within CED programmes is the correct feeding of animals, in designated spots, to ensure public health.
“Removing food would be like amputating the programme of one of its essential components and would take away its practical meaning and effect”, PAN reflected.
Cristina Rodrigues, of the party’s National Policies Committee, elaborated: “It is not morally defensible in this day and age to order an ever-more sensitive and compassionate population to abstain from feeding an animal, which also calls into question one of the five basic freedoms of animal welfare: that of not being hungry or thirsty.
“Insisting on a policy of death from deprivation of food is institutionalising cruelty and is not compatible with an ethical and evolved society”.
PAN’s draft bill aims to lay the foundations for the initiative by highlighting examples in Portugal and Europe that uphold public feeding, while also presenting models of shelters and feeding troughs implemented in the country, in several municipalities, where it is permissible to feed animals in public places.
This in itself, the party wraps up, indicates “a situation of inconsistency and legal uncertainty that justifies the uniformity of a legal framework for the practice”.

 

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Edition 1500
10 November 2018
Edition: 1500

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

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