24 October 2011
Earlier this month, students from the Downlands Community School, situated in Hassocks, West Sussex, travelled to Brussels to meet European policy-makers in the hope that their concerns about the poor living conditions for wild animals in Europe’s zoos would be recognised and addressed
Working in collaboration with the Born Free Foundation, 36 students accompanied Daniel Turner, Project Manager of The EU Zoo Inquiry 2011, to meet with key officials from the British Government and European Commission to raise their concerns and ask for more tangible efforts to improve animal husbandry and welfare standards in zoos. At the European Parliament, the students engaged with and won the support of, Members of the European Parliament, Catherine Bearder MEP and Keith Taylor MEP, who both pledged their support to ensure improved treatment of wild animals in captivity.
Daniel Turner, spokesperson for Born Free, praised the conduct of the students, “the dedication and energy of the students and teachers from Downlands Community School has helped to highlight our campaign to bring greater protection for wild animals in captivity. Words are not enough to thank the students for their help in these endeavours.”
(top) Students from Downlands Community School present their petition, calling for improved standards for animals in zoos to Andrea Gavinelli, Head of the Animal Welfare Unit in the European Commission.
(below) Keith Taylor MEP, who sponsored the students from Downlands Community School to visit Brussels, supports the EU Zoo Inquiry.