MPs support Battersea’s animal cruelty campaign

Over 100 MPs have showed their support for five-year prison sentences for animal cruelty at a reception held by Battersea in Parliament.

The event was in support the charity’s campaign to increase the maximum sentence for the most serious animal cruelty offences.

MPs were invited to sign Battersea’s pledge board to show their support for the change in law. The event was sponsored by North East Hertfordshire MP and long-standing animal welfare campaigner, Oliver Heald.

The leading animal welfare charity has been campaigning to raise the maximum sentencing for animal cruelty in England and Wales since 2017, as last week, a Private Member’s Bill by Chris Loder MP was introduced to increase the maximum sentence to five years.

The government has previously indicated that it intends to “support the Bill during its passage through Parliament and into law”. 

Claire Horton, Battersea chief executive, said: “We’re asking MPs to make this change in law a priority, so it was deeply heartening to see so many attend our reception to pledge their support for this vitally important Bill – it’s long overdue. 

“We need the law to better protect innocent animals in the future, acting as a deterrent and ensuring the punishment fits the crime. At Battersea, we’re determined to speak out for animals who have no voice of their own and it’s so encouraging to see how many MPs agree with us.”

Northern Ireland already has sentences of up to five years and the Scottish Government is currently legislating for five-year sentences as well.

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