Animal Welfare (Sentencing and Recognition of Sentience) Bill (Draft)

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 14th March 2019.

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Photo of Stephanie Peacock Stephanie Peacock Opposition Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has revised the draft Animal Welfare (Sentencing and Recognition of Sentience) Bill since his Department closed the consultation on 26 October 2018; and when he plans to lay the Bill before Parliament.

Photo of David Rutley David Rutley Assistant Whip (HM Treasury), Government Whip

The Government is committed to ensuring that any necessary changes required to UK law are made in a rigorous and comprehensive way to ensure animal sentience is recognised after we leave the EU, and to increasing maximum sentences for animal cruelty offences from six months to five years.

The Government published the draft Animal Welfare (Sentencing and Recognition of Sentience) Bill for public consultation on 12 December 2017. The consultation closed on 31 January 2018 and the summary of the consultation responses was published on 7 August 2018. Officials continue to engage with stakeholders to further refine the Government’s proposals on animal sentience.

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