Harvard Law School has announced that Bradley L. Goldberg, founder and president of the Animal Welfare Trust, has made a generous gift to support the Animal Advocacy Program at Harvard Law School. By funding curriculum development, experiential learning, scholarly gatherings and exchanges, forums for discussion and debate, and the establishment of an Academic Fellows program, this gift will launch a new level of activity in animal law at the Law School and will enable faculty members, students, and practitioners to build innovative bridges between theory and practice.
“Once at the margins, legal questions about the status, interests, and treatment of animals increasingly take their rightful place across society,” said Martha Minow, Morgan and Helen Chu Dean and Professor at Harvard Law School. “Now is the time for the resources of tort, property, family law, environmental law, constitutional law, and legal change strategies to make a crucial difference in the lives of animals. We are thrilled that Brad Goldberg has chosen Harvard Law School to advance his visionary work and enable faculty, students, and practitioners to propel new thinking and action on animals and the law.”
The Australian Animal Welfare Strategy (AAWS) provides a national framework to identify priorities, coordinate stakeholder action and improve consistency across all animal use sectors including:
- livestock and production animals
- animals used for work, recreation entertainment and display
- companion animals
- native, introduced and feral animals
- aquatic animals, and
- animals used in research and teaching.
Domestic animal legislation and latest news– Australia
Act & Regulations
Animal Welfare legislation
Educating the Next Generation of Animal Law Attorneys
The Center for Animal Law Studies (CALS), in collaboration with the Animal Legal Defense Fund, is the home to the Animal Law Program and animal law projects and activities of Lewis & Clark Law School. We work to ensure the interests of animals are considered in the legal realm and provide the best education to the next generation of animal law attorneys.
Last week, an animal rights group known as the Nonhuman Rights Project filed lawsuits in three New York counties in an attempt to get judges to declare that chimpanzees are “legal persons” and free them from captivity. The suits are the opening salvo in a coordinated effort to grant legal personhood to a variety of animals across the United States.
Parliament of Australia
On 27 June 2013 the Senate referred the Voice for Animals (Independent Office of Animal Welfare) Bill 2013 [No. 2] for inquiry and report.
Submissions should be received by 30 September 2013. The reporting date is 30 November 2013.
The Committee is seeking written submissions from interested individuals and organisations preferably in electronic form submitted online or sent by email to email@example.com as an attached Adobe PDF or MS Word format document. The email must include full postal address and contact details. Alternatively, written submissions may be sent the committee at the address listed below.
Committee Secretariat contact:
Senate Standing Committees on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport
PO Box 6100
Canberra ACT 2600
Phone: +61 2 6277 3511+61 2 6277 3511+61 2 6277 3511+61 2 6277 3511
Fax: +61 2 6277 5811
COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA
P A R L I A M E N T A R Y D E B A T ES
House of Representatives
No. 7, 2013
Monday, 3 June 2013
BY AUTHORITY OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
Tasmania is leading the nation in implementing new welfare regulations for commercial pig farms.
The state government has restricted the use of gestation stalls to no more than 10 days around mating.
Winkleigh pork producer, Alan Broomby is adapting to the new welfare code and making major changes in housing and managing his sows.
“We pride ourselves here on taking good care of our pigs,” Alan Broomby said.
“We try and grow our pigs to the highest welfare we can.”
Last month New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed laws creating two new felonies for animal abuse. The first, “Patrick’s Law,” increases neglect of a dog from a disorderly persons offense, a misdemeanor, to a fourth degree felony, or in some cases, a third degree felony. The fines associated with these crimes were also increased. Additionally, overworking an animal is now a misdemeanor offense. The law was inspired by Patrick, a malnourished pit bull who was thrown down a garbage chute in a trash bag by his owner. Patrick survived and was rescued, but owner Kisha Curtis is not expected to face harsh penalties for her actions. Under the new law, even failing to provide a dog like Patrick with adequate food and water could land a similar offender in custody. The bill was passed by the NJ Assembly last spring.
What we do?
The activities of the Panel are principally directed to two things: first, law reform and second, strategic litigation.
In the case of law reform, submissions are made for example to parliamentary inquiries, government and in particular Commonwealth parliamentarians. The view is taken that animal welfare should be a Commonwealth responsibility. Certainly, adequate constitutional power exists for the Commonwealth to discharge this role: for example, the corporations power, the trade and commerce power, and the post and telegraph power. There is also of course the possibility of an intergovernmental agreement, as a result of which for example the Commonwealth now plays a primary role in environment protection.
Strategic litigation in round terms is directed to the object of creating court precedents which stand to strengthen the welfare of animals. Where possible, cases in the ordinary course are screened through PILCH to ensure that public interest criteria are satisfied. PILCH then arranges, where appropriate, a law firm to instruct a member of the Panel (nominated by the Panel) as counsel. In addition, the Panel has an adjunct panel of law firms, which includes national first-tier firms to instruct in litigation.
In addition, more recently the Panel has taken steps to heighten its media profile in order to publicise issues of concern and to let it be known that animal welfare is seen as a justice issue by lawyers.
By ‘justice issue’ is meant that Australia’s laws, and in particular its animal protection statutes, provide for the institutionalised suffering of animals, some half a billion a year. This outcome results from the sanction by such statutes of codes of practice, compliance with which creates a defence or exemption to the application of the cruelty provisions of those statutes.
The codes provide for an animal welfare threshold that is much lower than the standards prescribed by the cruelty provisions of the statutes. For example, the Code of Acceptable Farming Practice for the Welfare of Poultry sanctions the confinement of a battery hen to a cage the floor area of which is less than an A4 size sheet of paper.
The Secretariat performs a research and administrative role. Animal welfare is a technical area and much of it is a science. Sound research skills are therefore called upon regularly to be exercised by Secretariat members.
Finally, the Panel intends to hold one to two major seminars a year at which prominent lawyers will speak with a view to disseminating the message that animal welfare is a justice issue, and to instruct interested lawyers and others in matters of current concern.
The Panel arranges for legal advice and representation by its member counsel only. It does not as a body give legal advice or representation; nor does the Secretariat.