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Government urged to rethink sentience law

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By Matthew Limb and Georgina Mills

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee (EfraCom) has urged the government to rethink ‘flawed and ambiguous’ draft legislation aimed at enshrining the principles of animal sentience into UK law.

The influential committee of MPs said a new law, crafted with clearer concepts and accountability, would be better than one hastily incorporated into a Bill that is essentially seeking to toughen animal cruelty penalties.

In a report published last week, the EfraCom said the draft Animal Welfare (Sentencing and Recognition of Sentience) Bill had been ‘rushed’ and that ‘animals deserve better than to be treated in a cavalier fashion’.

The draft Bill was published on 12 December 2017. It lays out plans to reflect the principle of animal sentience into domestic law, as well as increasing maximum sentences …

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