Right to Release
What's happening in VIC?
In 2021, the Victorian Government launched the Taskforce on Rehoming Pets. This Taskforce was established to investigate and provide recommendations to Government on how to improve and further support the rehoming of dogs and cats in Victoria.
We at Beagle Freedom Australia put forward many suggestions to the Taskforce, one being the Right to Release, and many others, to improve the lives of animals used for research in Victoria. You can read our submission here. We also took part in the round table discussions. Only some of our suggestions were taken on board and included in the final report.
The report was submitted, the Government then released their response in Feb 2022. The response supported ALL the recommendations put forward to them.
However, we are now another year later, 2023, and are yet to see any of these supported suggestions put into place, so please fill out our petition, if you haven’t already, as we are still fighting!
The Petition of certain citizens of the State of Victoria draws to the attention of the Legislative Council, that companion animals such as cats and dogs have a very strong intrinsic value for the majority of Australians. Exact statistics are unavailable for the state of Victoria, but many of the animals used are euthanised at the completion of research with an intravenous barbiturate overdose. In Victoria, there is a deficiency in law as no standard or policy exists within the Act that covers this area of research animal welfare. While the Australian code for the care and use of animals for scientific purposes encourages rehoming, and despite support and approval for rehoming, such practices are not always taking place, presumably because the practice is not mandated. As a result, hundreds of healthy dogs and cats are being killed for no reason when a solution exists.
The petitioners therefore request that the Legislative Council call on the Government to instate a Bill that ensures a state wide system take the place of the current voluntary practice which is failing to provide rehoming opportunities for all of these animals. Such a Bill would open up the lines of communication between research facilities and rescue and rehoming centres to give cats and dogs used in research the potential opportunity to be rehomed. If surrender cannot be arranged with any rescue organisations due to space or other concerns, the research facility can choose to rehome privately.