Close to home here in Longman, there are local beef cattle, poultry and pig farming industries. So, I was very concerned with what I saw in the media at the beginning of the year regarding live exports.
You may have already seen I have been standing by the people in our area on this issue since May. I posted a video on my Facebook page when I first announced Labor’s plan.
Despite many chances, the live sheep trade has been unable to demonstrate it is capable of meeting reasonable animal welfare standards.
The Liberals’ Minister for Agriculture, David Littleproud, said he wanted to take a “science-based approach” but has chosen to ignore the advice of both the Australian Veterinary Association and RSPCA. They say live sheep cannot be transported to the Middle East during the northern summer period without suffering extreme heat stress.
This is why Labor’s policy is to put a halt to the summer trade and phase-out the rest of the trade as quickly as is possible.
The good news is that on Monday September 10, the Senate passed a Bill to phase out the live sheep export trade. I, alongside the rest of Labor, voted to bring this very important Bill forward for debate in the House of Representatives. But, unfortunately, the Government fought against that – every single Coalition MP voted to prevent that from happening.
Please feel free to contact the Morrison Government MPs who have spoken out against animal cruelty - they must now stand by their convictions by helping us get the Bill through the Parliament.
You might want to start with the Member for Farrer, Sussan Ley, [email protected] and the Member for Corangamite, Sarah Henderson, [email protected] who have been the most outspoken. Until these two actually take action by standing with Labor to end the live export of sheep, their words are meaningless.
With over 750 pieces of correspondence coming through my office about this issue, our community expects the Government to do the right thing and work with Labor. If they don’t, we will certainly act when we form government at the next election.