Charity commends Belfast City Council’s support to end hunting wild mammals

The motion, End of Hunting for Mammals with Dogs, tabled by Councillor Peter McReynolds and seconded by Councillor Nuala McAllister states:

“This Council notes the widespread support across Belfast for the ending of animal cruelty and the improvement of animal welfare; expresses disappointment at the lack of legislative progression on banning the hunting of mammals with dogs in the Northern Ireland Assembly; reaffirms our support for ending this barbaric practice; and agrees to write to DAERA and the Committee for Agriculture and Rural Affairs to show our support for ending the practice of hunting wild mammals with dogs.”"

The motion was supported with 30 for, and 18 against.

Janice Watt, Senior Public Affairs Officer for the League Against Cruel Sports said: “We’re delighted Belfast City Council has put its support on record to end the barbaric cruelty of hunting wild mammals with dogs.

“This position shows the Council is far more in touch with public opinion than Stormont, which voted down a Bill to end hunting with dogs last month.”

The Hunting of Wild Mammals (Northern Ireland) Bill which was intended to prohibit hunting wild animals with dogs, prohibit trail hunting, and to prohibit terrier work failed at stage two after MLAs voted 38 for, and 45 against.

Sinn Fein blocked the Bill after being whipped to vote against it, and this pattern continued last night when Sinn Fein Councillors failed to support Councillor McReynolds’ motion.

Janice Watt added: “Northern Ireland is way behind its UK counterparts when it comes to legislating to end the cruelty of hunting wild mammals with dogs. Last month we had an historic opportunity to rectify this but sadly the attempt failed.

“Belfast City Council has sent a clear message that this is an issue which is not going to go away quietly. Public support is firmly in favour of ending this cruelty and the League will continue to campaign to end this cruel bloodsport once and for all.”

Notes to editor

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