10 June 2021 – The Members of the European Parliament voted in favour of a motion for a resolution on the European Citizens Initiative (ECI) “End the Cage Age”. Following a strong hearing in Parliament with positive statements from both, members of the Committee of Agriculture (AGRI) and Petition (PETI) on 15 April the European Parliament now joins forces together with 1.4 million EU citizens, over 170 organisations and scientists – first and foremost Dr Jane Goodall – to call for an end to the outdated and cruel caging of animals in the EU. Global animal welfare organisation FOUR PAWS welcomes the decision of the MEPs and strongly urges the European Commission to take a strong stance and respond to the call appropriately by proposing new legislation.
“Today is a good day for animal welfare. The support of the MEPs clearly shows that 1.4 million EU citizens, who overwhelmingly have supported the ECI since 2018, have like-minded support from the European Parliament. We now have to strengthen this force towards the Commission. Legislation that bans caging is much needed. Despite the EU's recognition of animals as sentient beings over 300 million pigs, chickens, ducks, quail and rabbits are still forced to live in cages in the European Union today. If the ECI is properly addressed by the Commission, this would finally belong to the past. The EU Commission must hear this call of over a million people, including experts and scientists. Cage-free farming would not only increase the welfare of hundreds of millions of animals by adapting agricultural systems to the physical and mental needs of animals, but it would also be beneficial to human wellbeing.”
Pierre Sultana, Director of the European Policy Office (EPO) of FOUR PAWS says
The COVID-19 pandemic demonstrates the interlinkage between animal welfare, human wellbeing and the environment. Evidence shows that 75 per cent of emerging infectious diseases originate in animals, meaning they are zoonotic.
“EU institutions need to address the negative impact of sick farming methods such as cage farming and embrace the collective movement against them to also prevent future pandemics”, says Sultana.
FOUR PAWS is the global animal welfare organisation for animals under direct human influence, which reveals suffering, rescues animals in need and protects them. Founded in 1988 in Vienna by Heli Dungler and friends, the organisation advocates for a world where humans treat animals with respect, empathy and understanding. The sustainable campaigns and projects of FOUR PAWS focus on companion animals including stray dogs and cats, farm animals and wild animals – such as bears, big cats and orangutans – kept in inappropriate conditions as well as in disaster and conflict zones. With offices in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, France, Germany, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, the UK, the USA and Vietnam as well as sanctuaries for rescued animals in eleven countries, FOUR PAWS provides rapid help and long-term solutions. www.four-paws.org