Worldlog week 36 – 2014
Summer recess is over and one of the first Parliamentary debates will be a debate that was requested by us, on the future of factory farming and, in particular, of mega stables! There will also be a major debate on animal welfare in the Netherlands. And on 15 September next, Parliament will also address my private member’s bill to end shooting for pleasure. On the 3rd Tuesday of this month, Budget Day will herald the Parliamentary year in the Netherlands. On that day, the King announces the plans of this Cabinet. Traditionally, it is also the day of wearing hats…
A piece of good news: this week, we will start with the 11th translation of my Worldlog: into Romanian, this time. The Worldlog can now be read in 12 languages. Proud!
In this Worldlog, I will give a short review of what I have done in the past weeks.
I have asked Parliamentary questions on dubious game counts performed by hunters as a basis for the hunting policy in the Netherlands. This was a response to research which proved that hunters count up to 200 per cent more geese in comparison to the independent Sovon Bird Research. Our party believes that the hunting policy should no longer be based upon game counts of hunters (what is called game management units).
For example, the counts of Game Management Units co-determine how many geese per year are permitted to be killed by hunters. The more geese are “counted” by hunters, the more they will be permitted to hunt. The hunting policy cannot be determined based upon such subjective figures.
This means that hunting in the Netherlands is based upon incorrect assumptions, which are even presented by hunters themselves. That obviously disrupts the natural balance and also causes a lot of animal suffering.
I also asked Parliamentary questions about the recurrence of mass killings of animals due to cheating with animal feed. By adding a prohibited substance to animal feed, thousands of animals were killed. Again, animals had to suffer due to abuses in the livestock sector…
Mass killings of healthy animals are unethical and severely damage animal welfare. “Culling” is done in closed-off stables, as a consequence of which the implementation and consequences with respect to animal welfare cannot be checked. We therefore want opening up of the stables by implementing CCTV and allowing press to enter.
I also want animals to be tested individually. Individual testing of animals at infected farms will prevent that animals will be killed for no reason. And I also want to know whether the State Secretary is prepared to set up a positive list for permitted ingredients for animal feed. This will simplify enforcement with respect to prohibited substances.
Last Sunday, I opened a new second-hand shop. Great! An additional benefit is that proceeds of the shop will be used for animal welfare projects. In this second-hand shop, a large team of volunteers, persons who re-enter the labour market and people with disabilities ensure that people can use and re-use various products in a sustainable manner.
We also passionately resisted the unholy plan of the People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD, the Liberal Party) to shoot seagulls in towns in the Netherlands because they supposedly cause “a nuisance”. An incredible way to deal with a problem that has been caused by people, because it’s people who have been throwing away food in the streets.