Australian Government response to the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee Report on the Voice for Animals (Independent office of animal welfare) Bill 2015

​​​Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, February 2016

The Australian Government welcomes the Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee report on the Voice for Animals (Independent Office of Animal Welfare) Bill 2015.

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On 25 June 2015, the Voice for Animals (Independent Office of Animal Welfare) Bill 2015 was referred by the Senate to the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee for inquiry and report by 15 September 2015. On 18 August 2015, the Senate granted an extension of time to report until 15 October 2015.

The Bill aims to establish the Office of Animal Welfare as an independent statutory authority with responsibility for advising on the protection of animal welfare in Commonwealth regulated activities; provide for the functions, appointment and terms and conditions of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), and for staff and consultants; establish the Office of Animal Welfare Advisory Committee to advise the CEO; and provide for reporting requirements.

The Senate Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee report made one recommendation. The committee recommends that the bill not be passed.

A copy of the report is available from the Senate website.

Australian Government response

Agreed. The Australian Government supports the committee’s recommendation not to pass this bill.

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