Target: Prime Minister David Cameron
Goal: Make it mandatory for slaughterhouses to install CCTV in United Kingdom.
Between 2009 and 2014, secret filming was done inside of ten slaughterhouses in the United Kingdom. Of those ten, abuse was recorded in nine of them. The cameras recorded animals being kicked, stomped, slapped, picked up by their fleece or ears and thrown into stunning pens. They recorded animals being improperly stunned and others being electrocuted painfully. Some pigs were burnt with cigarettes, other animals were left conscious while workers hacked repeatedly at their throats, and more still were severely beaten. Allegedly, none of the on-site staff or vets responsible for the health of these animals noticed the abuse. Of course it could also be they didn’t care enough to notice, or were being paid not to.
In an effort to encourage slaughterhouses to adopt CCTV, rights group Animal Aid petitioned supermarkets in the UK to adopt policies that require suppliers to install CCTV. However, while many did comply with this, upon inspection of Cheale Meats and Bowood Yorkshire Lamb, it was discovered that these cameras are not being properly monitored. Disgusting displays of cruelty were recorded by Animal Aid’s cameras in both facilities, right alongside cameras installed by the companies themselves. However, it was Animal Aid that brought legal action against the offenders, not the employers. Many reasons could be attributed to this, and one of the major ones are cameras being installed simply to meet consumer demand without anyone actually watching them. The other problem is the industry standard to sack abusive butchers rather than to report them.
For this reason, voluntary CCTV isn’t enough. There needs to be legislation demanding slaughterhouses install cameras and have staff designated to watch those cameras and properly report abusers. Sign to urge Parliament to do what businessmen will not and take responsibility for the safety of animals in their care. Join with Say Yes to Slaughterhouse CCTV petition and urge Parliament to take action.
Dear Prime Minister Cameron,
In a society ever more concerned about the environment, it’s no surprise people have also come to care more about the treatment animals receive. Even those destined to be eaten are no less deserving of dignity and consideration. It is abhorrent and shocking to find how little consideration is actually given by slaughterhouse owners and employees to the treatment of animals. Despite legislation and stricter laws regarding animal cruelty, slaughterhouses are still a black spot, ignored or often not considered when addressing such matters. However, they offer a prime position for monstrous people to enact their senseless cruelty on captive animals without fear of consequences.
This needs to stop. Voluntary CCTV to monitor slaughterhouses has proven ineffective. While the companies may install cameras, those cameras and the footage on them is neglected or disregarded. Abusers are not reported and often are not even fired for their cruelty. However, with legislation outlining the specific use and maintenance of these cameras, they could prove much more effective. It would reduce the incidences of abuse, and put more abusers behind bars where they belong.
Please, do not think these animals don’t deserve care. They are living beings, and though they will be killed and eaten, that does not mean they shouldn’t be respected. Demand slaughterhouses take responsibility for the the welfare of animals in their care. Pass legislation demanding the use of cameras to monitor employees and designate people to actually watch that footage and report offenders.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Animal Aid