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Actvists demand animal issues in political agendas

PR dla Zagranicy
Alicja Baczyńska 22.09.2015 18:50
Two out of three Poles are in favour of banning fur farms in the country, a new poll shows.
Photo courtesy of Otwarte KlatkiPhoto courtesy of Otwarte Klatki

Over 70 percent of respondents expect parties to take up animal rights issues in their programmes, reveals a study released by pollster Homo Homini. Commissioned by the Open Cages Association, the study is to serve as a wake-up call for the political elites ahead of the October parliamentary ballot.

Earlier this month, the organisation appealed to politicians to take a stand on animal rights. The petition has so far been signed by 15,000 people and generated statements on fur farming and animal welfare from a number of MP candidates.

"We do not support any particular political party," activist Krzysztof Witalewski stated in the organisation's communiqué. He argues that "voters have the right to demand legal solutions that would limit the suffering of animals."

The animal advocates hope to repeal the Agriculture Ministry's regulations setting minimum conditions for keeping animals farmed for their fur. According to the Open Cages, the legislation fails to meet standards required by EU law. The activists also point to lax enforcement and repeated cases of inhumane treatment, believed to be occurring across the 800 farms operating in Poland.

In recent years, activist interventions have generated multiple evidence for inadequate welfare standards and ongoing rights abuses across the fur industry. The organisation's reports, "The Price of Fur" and "Predatory Business", draw attention to crammed spaces suppressing the animals' natural behaviour, alongside a lack of medical care for often sustained wounds and injuries. As the organisation's probes show, stress induced in captivity frequently triggers mental disorders, self-harm and cannibalism.

Poland's fur market, worth PLN 5 bln (over EUR 1.1 bln), is the fourth largest in the world. (aba/rk)

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