With your permission, Mr. Speaker, and that of the House, I beg leave to present the national petition for the protection of animals. In doing so I ask that the names of the right hon. Member for Western Isles (Mr. Stewart) and the hon. Members for Derby, North (Mr. Whitehead) and Isle of Wight (Mr. Ross) be joined with mine to show that the petition has all-party support.
The petition is the brainchild of Mr. Bill Brown of Crowthorne in Berkshire, whose enthusiasm, hard work and dedication have led to the petition, which has 1·25 million signatures already, with some 10,000 more being added every week.
Wherefore your Petitioners pray that your Honourable House will take all measures as may be necessary to:
- 1. Minimise the suffering of such animals before, during and after experiment.
- 2. Encourage the development of non-sentient alternatives, in order to phase out, as soon as is technically possible, the use of living animals for experimental purposes.
- 3. Forbid the use of living animals for non-medical purposes.
- 4. Establish much greater control over tests on living animals directed principally to commercial gain.
- 5. Remove the secrecy which surrounds the majority of experimental establishments.
- 6. Until alternatives replace animals for research, only those bred for the purpose, under meticulous control, shall be used.
- 7. Bring under control all procedures of a scientific nature involving animals for experimental purposes.
- 8. Prohibit the export of animals to countries having laws which offer less protection to laboratory animals than those in the United Kingdom.