CCA Welcomes UK Ivory Ban Consultation

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CCA is pleased to welcomes the decision of the UK Government to open  consultation on a total ban of Ivory Sales in the UK. CCA has been campaigning on this issue for a long time and has recently had numerous articles published in the Catholic press and elsewhere on the subject.

We are particularly pleased at the role that CCA Patron Sir David Amess MP (pictured above) has played in securing this consultation and we know that he has been pressuring the Government on this issue including signing a letter from many senior Conservative MP’S to the Prime Minister only last week which seems to have been crucial in securing the consultation which has just been announced by DEFRA.

CCA will be watching the consultation process with great interest and only a total UK ban on Ivory sales as part of a larger worldwide ban will stop the massacre of Elephants in the wild for their tusks.

Who not What

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I am currently attending the superb Compassion for World Farming (CIWF) Conference in London entitled Extinction and Livestock.

One of the major themes of the Conference is how 21st Century industrial farming(amongst it’s other horrors) is also destroying natural habitats by growing feed products for factory farmed animals and this driving many species to the verge of extinction including the Sumatran elephant whose population has been devastated by the destruction of the natural environment by Palm oil production which includes the palm kernel which is rendered down for  factory farm animal feed.

The Conference has a wide range of speakers but the highlight for me on the first day was the contribution of Neurologist and Public Health specialist, Aysha Akhtar and her message of the need for a Vegan/Vegetarian diet to solve the problems we and the planet are facing. Her message that we should treat Animals as “Who and not What” is one that CCA has been arguing for years and contrasted sharply with the contributions of even so called “enlightened, high welfare farmers” who continue to call the animals they work with as “products”  and therefore no different in their eyes to any inanimate object such as a pen or any other item.

This contrast is indeed a critical one and shows in very simple and easy to understand  terms the problems we continue to face in promoting Animal Welfare and Animal Rights

African Elephant Crisis Update

IFAW-Stop The Ivory Trade

The crisis facing the African Elephant is unfortunately not improving and CCA have been working with partner Animal Welfare organisations on trying to end the horrendous Ivory Trade for many years.

I was therefore delighted to support our colleagues at IFAW by representing CCA at a launch of a new research document on the problem held at the Houses of Parliament last week,  IFAW was asking UK Members of Parliament to sign an Early Day Motion asking for the UK Government to close down the UK Ivory Market and CCA support this excellent initiative.

The document and related research shows that scientists estimate that poachers killed 100,000 elephants between 2010 and 2012 at an average rate of one elephant killed every 15 minutes. This appalling massacre is fuelled simply and solely by consumer demand for Ivory from the elephants tusks and the latest Great Elephant Census published last year shows a 30% decline in elephant numbers form the last census which was only taken just seven years previously.

The elephant is facing extinction if the Ivory Trade is not stopped.

CCA will therefore increase its efforts to educate and inform on this matter throughout the world and we re-iterate our call for a total worldwide ban on the sale of Ivory as soon as possible.

CCA St Francis Award

St Francis Award

 

The presentation of the inaugural St Francis Award by Catholic Concern for Animals was made to Joyce D’Silva at the CCA Retreat at Holland House earlier this week.

Joyce who is currently the Ambassador for Compassion in World Farming and was CIWF’s Chief Executive from 1991-2005 was the unanimous choice of the CCA Trustee Board to receive the inaugural award and indeed she was chosen “by acclamation”.

Joyce’s work over many,many years on behalf of animals is an inspiration to us all and we were very pleased that Joyce could join us at our Annual Retreat to be presented with the Award by CCA Chair Judy Gibbons and then delighted that she gave us a short talk afterward including informing attendees of some of her and CIWF’s work over the years including the incredibly important success in getting animals officially recognised as “sentient beings” by the European Union which was the basis for much of the later enacted pro-animal European Union wide legislation and this subject matter is very topical currently as the UK seeks to leave the EU and negotiates BREXIT.

Day of Creation and CCA Retreat

Pope Francis 2017

 

September 1st is the day of Prayer for the Care of Creation and I am delighted that Pope Francis has just announced a joint appeal with the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Bartholomew I for the world to work together on this special day.

Pope Francis said:

“we invite everyone to adopt a respectful and responsible attitude toward Creation.”

“We also appeal,” the Holy Father added, “to those who have influential roles, to listen to the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor who suffer most from ecological imbalances.”

What a wonderful message and CCA endorses it fully and will take the message into the CCA Annual Retreat which begins on Monday 4th September at Holland House.

 

Good News from Malta

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I am delighted to report good news from Malta where a proposed cull of Pigeons has been cancelled after a public campaign supported by CCA and the Catholic Church on the island.

The plan had been to culls pigeon in Vittoriosa and this decision had been taken by the Vittoriosa local Council and the proposed cull was due to take place last week. However after a strong campaign of public protest against the proposals, the Maltese Government intervened to liaise with the council and agreed to help support other methods of trying to deal with the “perceived” problems that are claimed to be caused by the pigeons.

CCA strongly welcomes this last minute reprieve and I am delighted that CCA and the Church more generally played a part in this decision and I also had a talk and discussion with Marlene Mizzi MEP on the subject when we met in Brussels last week and she played a key part in the protest campaign.

However CCA will continue to monitor the situation on the island.

CCA/ASWA Award to Kirkham Prison

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It was  a great pleasure to take part in the annual CCA/ASWA Award ceremony in conjunction with the Ministry of Justice at Kirkham Prison on Friday.

The awards are give every year for the best Prison projects for the environment and animal welfare and all prisons are eligible to submit entries which are then visited and inspected by experts and  the winners are chosen.It is a great way to work with the natural world in the prison environments and for prisoners to learn about and make a great contribution to the natural environment around them and also to also gain skills ahead of their release.

Kirkham Prison which is the largest open prison in the country was a worthy overall winner.