RSPCA Cymru has expressed disappointment at a report, prepared for Welsh Government, which recommends against the introduction of mandatory CCTV in Wales’ slaughterhouses.

The report, entitled ‘The Need for and Possible Implementation of a Workable System of CCTV in All Slaughterhouses in Wales‘, was written by a Task and Finish Group, looking into the safeguarding of animal welfare at slaughter.

It concluded that there is “not sufficient basis” to make the implementation of CCTV a mandatory requirement in abattoirs in Wales – a position with which RSPCA Cymru disagrees.

RSPCA Cymru has instead urged the Welsh Government to protect animal welfare, slaughterhouse staff and recognise the strength of public opinion on this issue, by implementing legislation which would mean each of Wales’ abattoirs must install CCTV systems.

The charity believes that the introduction of such systems will provide the public with renewed confidence as to the quality of life of farmed animals slaughtered, whilst acting as a deterrent to animal cruelty, as well as a safeguarding and training tool for staff.

CCTV in slaughterhouses is a mandatory requirement of the RSPCA farm animal welfare standards. RSPCA Assured is the RSPCA’s ethical food label dedicated to farm animal welfare, and meets these standards.

Claire Lawson, RSPCA assistant director of external relations in Wales, said:

“RSPCA Cymru wholeheartedly supporters the introduction of CCTV in abattoirs in Wales, which we believe should be compulsory. As such, we are disappointed by any report which recommends otherwise – and do not think these suggestions are in the interests of animal welfare.

“We urge the Welsh Government to instead protect animals being slaughtered from possible mistreatment, and slaughterhouse staff from any unfounded allegations, by backing the implementation of CCTV in abattoirs.

“RSPCA Cymru wants to see legislation introduced to make CCTV in abattoirs mandatory, and will continue to urge the Welsh Government to act in Wales.

“Polling has indicated 82 percent of the public in Wales supporting the introduction of CCTV, and we believe this would be an important step in the improvement of farm animal welfare in this country.”

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