Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Bill - Second Reading

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords am 4:35 pm ar 21 Chwefror 2024.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb Green 4:35, 21 Chwefror 2024

My Lords, I too welcome the Minister to his first Bill. I assure him that this is the easiest Bill he will ever touch, so getting it through quite fast would be a good idea. I also thank him for the briefing he gave. I did slightly resent his team not answering my question about where the flaws were; they suggested that that was my job, and I had to look for myself. I am not sure there has ever been a Bill since I arrived in your Lordships’ House—that was 10 years ago—that has not had at least one flaw, if not thousands, because this Government are so good at bad legislation. We see some really awful things here. I thought I might deserve a finder’s fee for spotting a “Brexit benefit”, but others had already made that joke—including, I think, the Minister himself.

The figures I have seen on live exports are absolutely horrendous. I cannot believe that people actually thought it was okay to treat animals like this—subjected to journeys of over 2,000 miles, lasting 70 hours. As other noble Lords have said, if we do not get this Bill enacted, it could start again.

I support the noble Baronesses, Lady Young and Lady Fookes, on the issue of other species being allowed to be brought in by the Secretary of State. I too have fought against such measures, but here I think it is appropriate. Of course, it is incredibly important that the regulation is not only tough but overseen properly. Obviously, the Minister will have implacable hostility from several noble Baronesses if that does not happen.

I do support this Bill and I think the harshest thing I can say about it is: about time.