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Forum to Explore Animal Welfare and the Law

03 March 2014

UK - The forthcoming Animal Welfare Foundation (AWF) Discussion Forum will explore whether a legal muddle is causing unnecessary suffering to livestock. The Forum will take place in London on 12 May.

AWF returns with its popular Discussion Forum on 12 May with vet David Chennells asking whether uncertainty surrounding three separate pieces of legislation covering welfare on farm, during transport, and at the slaughterhouse impacts negatively on livestock welfare.

He will contend that the lack of specific legal definitions, inconsistencies and vagaries of court decisions creates uncertainty which can result in animals spending too long in recovery pens because of chronic lameness or minor wounds. The debate will centre around whether these animals suffer extended long-term pain on farm because of a fear of transporting them when in fact they could be carefully transported without causing extra pain, discomfort or distress.

Other Discussion Forum topics include:

  • When does a shelter become a hoard: what psychological factors are involved in the growing problem of animal hoarding? (Fiona McEwen, Institute of Psychiatry)
  • Will improving the horse passport system lead to better welfare? (Keith Chandler, British Equine Veterinary Association)
  • What does the offence of causing unnecessary suffering really mean? (Mike Radford, The School of Law, Aberdeen University)

AWF is the charity led by the veterinary profession. It was formed by members of the British Veterinary Association (BVA) in 1983.

The Discussion Forum brings together vets, vet nurses, animal welfare organisations, students, media and parliamentarians to confront current welfare issues and inspire change.

The AWF Discussion Forum takes place on Monday 12 May from 10am to 5pm at One Great George Street in London. Places are £85 and delegates are invited to attend the subsequent AWF/BVA House of Commons reception from 7pm to 9pm.

To see the full AWF Discussion Forum programme, to book a place or to see how the Forum has made a difference visit

TheMeatSite News Desk

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