Like the majority of Quebecers, we consider that animals intended for consumption should be raised in conditions that ensure them a minimum of well-being. There is a broad scientific consensus that these animals are just as capable of feeling pain and suffering as our dogs, cats and other pets.
The more research progresses, the more we discover that many animals have far more complex cognitive and emotional capacities than initially suspected – and this applies as much to dogs and cats as to cows, pigs, chickens and other mammals. and birds raised for our consumption. It is therefore necessary to take into account the interests and needs of all animals in the way we treat them, whether they end up sleeping on our couch or on our plate.
It seems inconceivable to us, and contrary to scientific advances on these issues, that in 2023, farmed animals will benefit from practically no legal protection. Indeed, the Animal Welfare and Safety Act, adopted in 2015, still excludes animals used for agricultural purposes from the basic protections provided for in Articles 5 (obligation to provide an animal with water and food, adequate environment and care when injured or ill) and 6 (prohibition of causing distress to an animal), provided they are treated in accordance with “generally accepted rules” of the industry . Since these rules are not defined in the Act, such an exception has the effect of giving the industry the power to determine for itself which practices are “generally accepted” and therefore legal.
It seems to us contrary to common sense to give an industry through which millions of sentient beings pass the power to self-regulate.
Quebec society, though recognized for its progressive values, is lagging far behind the many nations around the world that have for decades adopted laws or regulations dictating mandatory standards of care for animals intended for consumption.
We are convinced that all together, government, producers and citizens, we want and can do better for the well-being of animals raised for consumption in Quebec. We firmly believe that it is time to fill the legal void in this area and that it is necessary for the government to finally formally regulate the living conditions of these animals. We therefore call for the establishment of regulations establishing mandatory minimum standards, as is the case in many countries around the world. Such a regulatory framework can only benefit productions already concerned about animal welfare and encourage others to adopt best practices.
By protecting all animals, including those raised for food, we are taking a step towards a fairer and more equitable world for all living beings. We recognize that we are actors within a larger ecosystem than that imposed by economic forces which exert various pressures on all the protagonists, whether they are producers, consumers or animals. By recognizing the need to ensure a minimum well-being for all, it is to each of the players in the system that we thus grant respect and dignity.
Consult the manifesto https://signezpourlesproteger.ca/