1,463 petitions

Update posted 6 hours ago

Petition to Councillor Iain Malcolm

Stop using animals for entertainment and stop spending council money on cruelty.

In December 2016, South Tyneside Council went ahead with using camels in the Winter Wonderland parade. The camels are 'owned' by a company called Joseph's Amazing Camels - among other things this company does is hire camels out for camel racing and organises pig racing. The camels travel over 4 hours and 230 miles  from their base in Idlicote, Warwickshire in the back of a truck for the sake of a 15 minute walk along a tarmacked road in the north east of England.  Then immediately after they travel back.  These animals have endured a minimum of 8 hours in the back of a truck to take part in this shameful spectacle.  The camels are ridden along the route and are 'dressed up' in LED lights. Directly next to the camels is a band called Spark! - they are a drumming and special effects band with flashing lights and extremely loud drumming.  The noise next to these poor animals is horrendous. The camels are directed by harness and lead along the route so have no option but to go where they are directed.  On one occasion at the end of the route a camel is startled by flashing lights of a service vehicle and pulled round the corner to continue to where it was loaded with the others. Their natural habitat is remote desert areas, and their large padded feet are designed to walk on soft sandy soil and their locomotion adapted to an arid environment of flat open terrain. A group of local animal welfare campaigners of which I am a group campaigned throughout 2016. This took the shape of a petition which raised 1200 names which was presented to the council, attending a meeting which was supposed to be a review of the use of animals in the parade, but was actually a rubber stamping for the rebooking of them, we also had a meeting with council officers, interviews in the press and a large silent protest on the night (where the owner of the camels decided to abuse the protesters who did not rise to him). I also raised a freedom of information request, the council breached the regulations and only released the information requested at the exact time the protest was taking place. One of the key pieces of information was the cost of this parade which was £28,000 at a time when local services are cut to the bone or being withdrawn. They also appear to have grossly over estimated on the actual evening - we estimated attendees to be in the high hundreds but they used figures of 8000+. Our local MP, Emma Lewell Buck,  was very supportive of our campaign The three councillors for the ward in which this takes place have been contacted requesting a meeting, however, a reply received from one of them says that he does not see the point as council policy on the use of animals is clear and they will rebook the camels. A similar request for a meeting of council officers was initially declined "unless we have new information". We have now managed to secure a meeting with the councillors and council officers plus representatives of concerned constituents. On the 6 March I raised a further FOI request which again the council have breached by not responding within the required time so yet again I have had to contact the ICO. I have also contacted one of the likely acts in the event to ask them not to support the use of camels and once I have any other acts or sponsors confirmed I will also contact them. We have also contacted our local paper which is the Shields Gazette who ran an article wittily (!) entitled 'protesters get the hump'. We are hoping they may be interested in doing a further article this year from the angle of the amount of money it costs to put on at a time of severe local austerity. If they decide to include animals again we will be doing a silent protest on the night but also a series of noisy protests in the lead up to it. Animal Defenders International have already pledged their support as has Peter Egan (actor from Downton Abbey and renowned animal welfare activist) and a number of other animal welfare groups. Please share this new petition far and wide, if you are local would you please show the town in which you are based so we can prove that local people as well as the national and international community care. Thank you so much for signing this petition against animal abuse - let's get this stopped once and for all!    

Anna Malia
1,585 supporters
Update posted 1 day ago

Petition to Office of Local Government, Niall Blair MP, Anthony Roberts MP, Gabrielle Upton MP, Clover Moore, Tim Hurst, Paul Toole MP

Link Pet Registries Australia wide to prevent theft and loss.

The NSW Pet Registry is not linked to any of the 5 other national pet databases. This means someone could steal your pet and bring it to (or from) NSW and their microchips wouldn’t scan in their new location. With any luck, your pet would end up in a new loving home. But equally, it could end up used as a fighting dog, or as bait, or sold into a puppy mill, or for any number of other awful scenarios. But no matter what, you’d be left heartbroken. A real life example… In 2013, whilst living in Melbourne, my girlfriend and I rescued the two most amazing dogs in the world. A Husky named Cali and a Labrador named Snickers. I registered them and paid the adoption fees, and they came to live with me for good. In 2015, life took us to Sydney. But a year later, my ex and I split up. At first we shared the dogs, but then my ex changed her mind and I haven’t seen them in 10 months and counting. I’m now facing legal bills in the tens of thousands to win them back through the courts, and it’s something that could have been avoided.  You might be wondering how this happened, since I paid for them and they’re registered to me... Well, just a few days after we split up, my ex went down to the local council and re-registered the dogs in her name. They already had microchips with my information, but the NSW registry doesn’t link to any other database in Australia. It’s the only one that doesn’t. So when their chips failed to return any information, she simply pretended they had never been registered before, and that I didn’t exist, even though both dogs had been officially mine throughout the rest of Australia since 2013. She wasn’t even asked for a change of ownership form. It was negligent of the council not to ask why an 8 and a 5 year old dog had chips that had “not been activated", but moreover it’s a failure of the system that their chips didn’t scan correctly. This is exactly what micro chipping is meant to protect against! How is it possible that the registries are not linked? Please sign this petition to have Pet Registries (in particular the NSW Pet Register) linked Australia wide effective immediately. Protect your pets from loss/theft.

Ben McPhee
979 supporters