ASK YOUR MP TO GET THE BAN DONE
On 25 November, a Private Member’s Bill to ban trophy hunting imports into Britain, submitted by Henry Smith, MP, is due its second reading in the commons. You can help by urging your MP to support the Bill and vote for it when it comes to Parliament for debate.
After years of Born Free campaigning, the UK government has pledged to ban the macabre imports of trophies from hunting. The ban is backed by leading wildlife conservation groups and scientists, and has the overwhelming support of the UK public. We call on the UK Government to end trophy imports and #GetTheBanDone.
Our Head of Policy, Dr Mark Jones, urges the UK government to make good on their promise to ban trophy hunting imports and set a precedent for other countries to follow.
It’s now three years since the Conservative party promised to introduce a ban on the import of hunting trophies into the UK in its election manifesto. The promised ban, which was included in the subsequent Queen’s Speech, received strong public support following a public consultation launched in November 2019.
Repeated public opinion surveys have since confirmed overwhelming support among all voter groups. The promise was reiterated in DEFRA’s Action Plan for Animal Welfare in May 2021. A Bill has been drafted and has been ready to go for months.
Yet in May of this year, the Government inexplicably dropped its plans to table the ban when it abandoned its ‘Animals Abroad Bill’ in which it would have been included alongside a raft of additional progressive animal welfare measures.
Instead, the ban has been reduced to a Private Member’s Bill, tabled by Crawley MP Henry Smith, which the Government has said it will support. Mr Smith deserves great credit for pursuing the ban, but Private Members’ Bills rarely make it to the statute book. The recent political chaos has brought the likelihood of the Bill surviving into further question.
Born Free will continue to do all we can to support Mr Smith’s bill and push all political parties to commit to banning trophy imports. We are also urging the European Union to do the same, and to that end we co-organised an event in the European Parliament in October 2022 at which we launched a joint report with our partner organisations detailing the damage trophy hunting inflicts on individual animals and wider wildlife populations, while doing little or nothing for local communities.
One way or another, we need to #GetTheBanDone. You can help by urging your MP to support Henry Smith’s Bill.