Tougher sentencing

Increase the maximum sentence for animal abusers from six months to five years.

Second Reading passed

The Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill 2020 was published in January.

We're absolutely delighted that the Second Reading of the Bill on 23 October was successful, and it will now proceed to Committee Stage for debate.

In 2019, over 11,000 of our supporters emailed their MP urging them to support tougher sentencing for animal cruelty - but the Bill put forward in 2019 ran out of time to pass through the UK Parliament.

We're still working hard to ensure that this time the Bill becomes law in England.

The Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill

After years of campaigning and with help from our supporters, Defra put forward an Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill in Summer 2019 - to increase the maximum sentence for animal abusers from six months to five years in England. This followed on from a public consultation the previous year, in which more than 70% of people supported proposals for tougher prison sentences.

When a Bill is passed it will mean courts are able to take a tougher approach to cases such as dog fighting, abuse of puppies and kittens, or gross neglect of farm animals.

The Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill 2020 contains the same measures and will give England one of the toughest sanctions for animal abuse in Europe, strengthening our position in animal welfare as a global leader.

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