31 January 2017
Mark Dawes of Waltham Forest & Redbridge Green Party joined the demonstration against the badger cull on Thursday January 26th. The demonstration started in Leicester Square and then marched past Downing Street and the Houses of Parliament, ending with a vigil for the thousands of badgers who have been killed outside DEFRA. There were speakers from the Badger Trust, Born Free Foundation, League Against Cruel Sports and Animal Aid.
Over 10,000 badgers were killed as part of the cull in 2016 alone and the Government is seeking to extend the cull even further. This is despite the fact that the scientific consensus is that it is ineffective and will do nothing to stop TB in cattle which is the alleged reason for the killing. In 2015 the Government got rid of most the scientific criteria that it had used to justify the cull so making it even less efficient and scientific.
The method of killing is very cruel to the badgers as a lot of badgers were not killed outright but left to suffer painful deaths over a length of time. It is also very expensive – thousands of pounds for every badger killed. The reason for the spread of TB is not badgers but is down to cattle to cattle transmission due to the movement of cattle around the country and poor biosecurity.
The Government are caving in to pressure from the National Farmer’s Union – not a union as such but lobby group on behalf of Big Agribusiness – who want to get of rid animal protection laws so as to eradicate all animals they deem as ‘pests’ – any animal that gets in the way of their profits. This would destroy British wildlife as we know it and leave our countryside a barren place. Fittingly, the NFU London Office is next door to DEFRA.
“This Government’s policies towards wildlife are absolutely ignorant, showing no understanding of ecology. They are also callous and sadistic”, said Mark Dawes of Waltham Forest & Redbridge Green Party. “They think the solution to every problem is to kill and cull animals and this will lead to the loss of some of our most treasured wildlife” he added.