Animal Defenders Office

at , Canberra, 2601

The Animal Defenders Office ACT is a non-profit community legal centre that specialises in animal law. We provide advice and assistance to individuals and groups that seek to protect animal interests, and advocate for law reform.

Animal Defenders Office

Canberra , ACT 2601
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Come along to this wonderful exhibition by local artist, Shan Crosbie, who is using art to show the similarities between pigs and dogs, and the differences in how they are treated. Belconnen Arts Centre this Friday 24 June from 5.30pm.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-19 00:59:29 GMT

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-05-26 05:34:33 GMT

Mike from the Animal Defenders Office spoke about the different types of laws that can apply to advocates and activists.

Published Animal Liberation ACT on 2016-07-03 11:01:07 GMT

It's great there are some politicians who care about animal welfare, and who call out those who don't. Well done on being reelected Andrew Wilkie.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-07-03 10:41:06 GMT

Standing room only at today’s Practical Advocacy Workshop for animal advocates and activists in Canberra. Organised by Vegan ACT, the workshop was a huge success, showcasing the wide array of animal protection organisations in the nation's Capital. Mike, ADO volunteer lawyer and Director, gave an overview of some of the laws that animal advocates and activists need to be aware of. It was a great event to be part of – congratulations to the organisers!

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-07-03 10:27:09 GMT

Care about animals and wondering who to vote for this Saturday? This may assist:

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-29 06:14:15 GMT

Vegan ACT is hosting a practical advocacy workshop this Sunday from 1pm to 5pm at the Playing Field Studio (2 Kingsley St, Canberra). Come along if you want to learn more about how you can advocate for animals!

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-28 09:45:54 GMT

"Parents of children with significant disabilities are turning to animals as a form of therapy to give their children confidence and help them improve physically."

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-26 23:51:03 GMT

Calling all law students and budding animal lawyers to sharpen your quills – the NSW Young Lawyers Animal Law Committee's annual animal law essay competition is underway! Everyone has a favourite animal protection issue – so now is the time to turn that passion into words and write a short essay on it. Only 2,000-2,500 words! And if you win, you get to undertake an internship with the RSPCA – rare work experience using animal law! Entries due by Monday 4 July, so no time to waste. More information:

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-24 23:37:20 GMT

Details have just emerged of how the Department of Agriculture sacked its own vet who provided evidence of animal cruelty on live export ships. After accidently publishing the evidence on its website, the Department then sacked the vet because the live export industry said it could no longer work with her. The role of veterinarians on live export shipments has always been controversial given the perceived conflict of interest. The vets are usually hired by the exporters. This may encourage favourable reporting of conditions so they can be hired again. Until recently vets on board ships also reported directly back to the exporters. This was changed after the Farmer Review into the industry following the Indonesian cattle exposé in 2011. Vets were then required to report to the Department and to the exporter simultaneously, although they are still hired by the exporters.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-22 06:17:10 GMT

Some of the ADO crew is in London and went to see the movie Unlocking the Cage about the Nonhuman Rights Project! The word is it’s a ‘great doco! It was well done and featured actual trial clips which were really interesting to see. I think you’d all enjoy it.’ So this is definitely one to watch for all you animal law junkies out there, and of course everyone interested in changing history for the benefit of animals, or just a good old legal thriller!

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-19 00:06:38 GMT

A disturbing insight into the mindset of the live animal export industry in which a Meat and Livestock Australia employee appears to encourage non-compliance with live export standards in favour of profits. It is clear that abhorrent animal cruelty will continue to be inflicted upon Australian livestock until this industry is abolished.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-17 22:33:04 GMT

Tonight we learnt of more horrors about the live export trade with Australian cattle tortured in Vietnam. This is despite successive Australian Governments claiming vast improvements in animal welfare in countries to which we export live animals. But have things really changed since the Indonesian live cattle disaster was exposed on national TV in 2011? Five years on, what can we learn from that ground-breaking exposé that halted an entire industry? These issues will be the topic of a talk by Dr Bidda Jones, Chief Scientist at RSPCA, and author of the recently published book ‘Australia’s Conflict of Values over Live Exports’, at the Manning Clark House on Thursday 23 June at 5.30pm. Free entry. Don’t miss this important opportunity to reflect on how past battles can lead to future victories. For ABC's 7.30 story about the Vietnamese slaughterhouse tonight see:

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-16 11:23:15 GMT

A beautiful article about Donna Stephan and her Sleepy Burrows Wombat Sanctuary.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-15 00:17:25 GMT

Have you thought about becoming more involved with activism? Not sure how to advocate around animal issues? Need confidence to answer those tricky questions about veganism? Come along to the Vegan ACT Practical Advocacy Workshop (PAW)! This half-day workshop will include different styles of activism, practical advocacy tips, activist self-care, intersectionality and legal rights. A range of speakers from local organisations such as Vegan ACT, Animal Liberation ACT, the Animal Defenders Office, Little Oak Sanctuary and A Poultry Place. All attendees will receive a take home pack of information and vegan refreshments will be available on the day. Please RSVP by 1 July for catering purposes. Any questions? Email Hope to see you there!

Published Vegan ACT on 2016-06-15 10:40:49 GMT

Animal welfare and the wool industry are in the news again, but this time for the welfare impact on animals other than sheep. 'PAPP', a new poison for wild dogs, was launched on the weekend. This bait is to be used by wool and sheep farmers to kill the dogs they see as threatening their livelihood. Farmers currently use the horrific ‘1080’ baits which kill animals in a very painful way. Wild dog baits are legal in NSW and the ACT because the cruelty offences of poisoning do not apply to non-native wild animals. PAPP is known also to kill native goannas, so it will not be aerial baited. The RSPCA have said they prefer PAPP but are still assessing how inhumane it is. At 3 times the cost, baiters may bypass PAPP and continue to use the cheaper (and far nastier) 1080 poison.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-13 09:21:55 GMT

News emerged yesterday that certain firearm devices used by shooters in the Government’s 2015 kangaroo cull were ‘probably’ illegal. To reduce awareness about the killing, which happens in and around the city, the shooters used silencers. But any device used ‘to muffle, reduce or stop the noise created by firing a firearm’ is banned in the ACT under the Prohibited Weapons Act 1996. The Registrar of Firearms can ‘un-ban’ devices by making a declaration. This has happened for silencers for the 2016 cull, but no such declaration was in place in 2015. This news emerged during a Tribunal hearing last week, and came on top of a finding by the Magistrates Court in April that the actual licence used to authorise last year’s killing was invalid. The Government has been asked to explain. So far it has responded with deafening silence, much like the kangaroo shooters’ guns.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-12 09:29:49 GMT

Today a victory for animal activists when the ACT Government’s case against a kangaroo defender was thrown out of court for lack of evidence. The activist was charged under a 1932 Act for allegedly trespassing on territory land during the kangaroo cull in 2014 (yes, 2 years ago). The charge carries a maximum fine of $750. The prosecution had spent a day presenting its evidence to the Magistrates Court last month. Today the Court rejected the entire case. It found that the prosecution hadn’t even proved the first element of the charge, which was that there was a sign authorised by the Minister prohibiting trespass on the land. It also found that none of the prosecution’s witnesses could show where the defendant actually was on the night of the alleged offence. So the ACT Government’s attempted criminalisation of dissent backfired today, with ACT taxpayers picking up the bill.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-09 11:28:01 GMT

There's still time to object to the proposed intensive piggery in Harden, which is only 1&1/2 hours outside of Canberra. Something definitely worth doing on World Environment Day. Say No To Blantyre Farms In Harden has made templates and guides available. Objections due tomorrow. Hopefully this proposed jail for up to 25,000 pigs will never see the light of day.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-05 06:15:38 GMT

Please would you HELP FREE the 40 DOGS ON CHAINS in the bush at BLIND BIGHT, Victoria??????Some of the dogs chained in bushland Image - Oscars Law

Published Kozzi Thomas May on 2016-06-05 04:13:58 GMT

Our animals at our wildlife sanctuary have been put into jeapody because of work that is being done to a track next door, the work is not necessary and it is simply so PIRSA can spend their allocated budget by the end of the financial year. They were asked to let us know when they were arriving and to give us time to move our kangaroos into another enclosure and allow us to sedate them prior to when works were to commence. They did not do this and so our kangaroos all went into panick mode when large machinery arrived, injuring themselves and causing a possibly fatal condition called myopathy. We were up until 4.30 that morning trying to save them. We have spent well over $1000 dollars building a new enclosure to try and get them a bit further away from where the machinery will be and we have spent nearly $1000 on medicating them to their injuries and myopathy as well as medication to try and keep them a bit calmer when works re commence. Despite trying to negotiate with this company they have been extremely rude and unhelpful. They are coming back on Monday to commence work. Another fright like they have already have had and there is a very real possibility all 17 of them will die. I have tried getting this out to the media but no one seems to be particularly interested. When you raise a kangaroo you invest so much time, not to mention money into them and they become a part of your family and to have this happen is absolute gut wrenching

Published Rachael Yeend on 2016-06-03 06:16:17 GMT

Breaking! In a first for Australia, the Hon. Mark Pearson, MLC, has told the NSW Parliament that he intends to introduce a bill to ban circuses from using most types of animals. Only truly companion animals (pets) would be allowed to be kept by circus troupes travelling throughout the State. Currently the ACT bans circus troupes with some exotic animals from crossing the borders. But circuses with other species of animals are allowed. Recently the Moscow Circus set up its tents in the ACT with water buffalo, camels, llamas and even two macaws. Being in circuses subjects these animals to a lifetime of captivity and travel. When there are so many modern circuses showcasing human talent rather than animals forced to display unnatural behaviours, animal circuses should have no part in a modern, compassionate world. The proposed bill might just bring that world a little closer. Congratulations to Alex Greenwich, Independent MP for Sydney, and Mark Pearson, Animal Justice Party NSW, for co-sponsoring the proposed bill.

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-02 03:34:31 GMT

Sydney’s CBD went to the dogs today, as people rallied against the export of greyhounds to race in other countries. This cruel practice has been halted in Australia because certain airlines refuse to transport them. Sadly it continues in places such as Ireland (the rally took place outside the Irish consulate). No matter the jurisdiction, the practice should be banned in legislation. It was good to see politicians (ie lawmakers) there as well, including Mark Pearson and Lynda Stoner from the Animal Justice Party NSW and Mehreen Faruqi from the The Greens NSW. #stopgreyhoundexports

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-02 03:01:20 GMT

The good news about the proposed intensive piggery in Harden is that it still isn’t built. In February 2016 over 1,100 submissions were lodged with Harden Council about the proposal to build the piggery that would confine up to 25,000 pigs in its sheds. However, Harden Council no longer exists as it has been merged with Boorowa and Young Councils. The new mega-Council, ‘Hilltops’, wrote to the piggery proponents for more information, which they have now provided. The Council considered the new information to be substantial, so has given until Monday 6 June for the public to comment on it. See Say No To Blantyre Farms In Harden for more details. The new information is available here:

Published Animal Defenders Office on 2016-06-01 11:11:27 GMT

Today locals will protest about conditions at the Wagga pound, as part of an ongoing campaign by pound volunteers to raise awareness about the treatment of animals at the shelter. A live kitten was found in the pound freezer (pictured below after recovery), and animals appeared to be left without food and water for days. The RSPCA investigated but was not confident of proving ‘criminal charges beyond reasonable doubt’. There is no code of practice for local government pounds in NSW, only for animal trades such as pet shops and grooming and boarding establishments. The RSPCA says this ‘presents challenges’ when it investigates complaints about the management of council pounds. The ADO supports this campaign for better treatment of the thousands of animals who end up in council pounds. For many the pound is the last place they come to, and it’s where they need the most kindness. The Wagga City Council Meeting Rally 30 May 2016 will be attended by the Member of the NSW Legislative Council Mark Pearson from the Animal Justice Party NSW. Earlier this month Mr Pearson asked the NSW Minister for Primary Industries, Niall Blair, if he would "exercise his powers" to seek a report from the RSPCA on why it did not lay charges in relation to the treatment of animals at the Wagga pound. The Minister is yet to respond.

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