World Horse Welfare backed by almost 44,000 in campaign for CCTV in slaughterhouses

World Horse Welfare can look back on a year in which it made big strides forward in different campaigns, as well as continuing to do its best to rehome horses at risk.

One outstanding success was the campaign aiming for mandatory CCTV inside Britain’s slaughterhouses, which received the backing of 43,737 members of the public.

William and Pippa Funnell handing over the petition Photo courtesy of Woorld Horse Welfare

William and Pippa Funnell handing over the petition
Photo courtesy of World Horse Welfare

The introduction and monitoring of CCTV at all slaughterhouses licenced to take horses in the UK would help the FSA (Food Standards Agency) in their duty of enforcement so that cruelty inside a UK abattoir this year can be prevented from happening again.

The popular petition was signed by the likes of BBC Formula One presenter, Lee Mckenzie; British Olympic equestrian sportswoman, Mary King and three-day eventing elite, Pippa Funnell and her show jumping husband, William. The Funnells handed the petition over to Defra at the end of November.

World Horse Welfare had been appalled at one slaughterhouse by the catalogue of breaches of laws meant to protect horses at slaughter – horses being beaten, dispatched in view of other horses, and other inhumane treatment.

World Horse Welfare called for suspension of all activities at this abattoir until new systems ensuring humane treatment were put in place. The abattoir was subsequently ordered to close temporarily, not on welfare grounds, but because the FSA said that the establishment did not meet all the infrastructure requirements which permit the safe production of meat.

Chief Executive of World Horse Welfare, Roly Owers said: “The public and horse owners need to have confidence that equine slaughter is carried out humanely in Britain. World Horse Welfare believes that complusory CCTV is a vital aid to help protect horses and while we believe there is a role for humane slaughter in Britain, inhumane slaughter has no place and is indeed illegal.”

He said World Horse Welfare hopes to make a strong impact on Defra with the number of signagtures collected from compassionate supporters and Defra could not ignore the importance of the call for action or fail to recognise the importance of public confidence in humane slaughter- or food safety.

The charity had pledged to continue to press the case for CCTV with Defra which is reluctant to compell slaughterhouses on cost grounds. It does not accept this argument and says CCTV can be installed at relatively low expense and would bring with it cost and other benefits.

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