Candidate MEPs take the Vote for Animals pledge


Candidate MEPs take the Vote for Animals pledge

25 April 2024
Press Release

MEPs of the Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals celebrated their achievements for the last legislative term, while candidates for the next one pledged to continue to advocate for better protection of all animals at the EU level.

The Intergroup, which met for the last session for this term, brings together 94 MEPs from across all political groups, and provides a cross-party platform for discussions and initiatives on animal welfare in the European Parliament (EP). For the past four decades, it has been a crucial catalyst for action on this front.

Some of the noteworthy achievements of this term include:

  • The set-up of a Committee of Inquiry on the Protection of Animals during Transport (ANIT), which pushed for the revision of the outdated Regulation on animal transport.
  • The resolution on actions to accelerate a transition tonon-animal science.
  • The working group on the ECI End the Cage Age, which contributed to get  a resolution in the EP and a subsequent European Commission (EC) commitment.
  • The adoption of a resolution on improving Regulations on wild and exotic animals to be kept as pets in the EU, through a positive list.
  • The support for a campaign calling for an EU commissioner on animal welfare.
  • working group on companion animals.

During her intervention, President of the Intergroup Tilly Metz said that the Intergroup has continuously made animal welfare visible in the EP, through reports, working groups, resolutions and parliamentary questions. She expressed her disappointment at the EC’s failure to put forward a full package of proposals to update the EU animal welfare legislation, despite continuous pressure by members of the Intergroup and animal protection NGOs.

In the run-up to the European Elections in June, candidate MEPs are taking a pledge stating a clear commitment to strive to improve animal welfare if they are elected, through the Vote for Animals campaign, run by Eurogroup for Animals and its members. The pledge, composed of ten asks, addresses live animal transport, imports of animal-based products, welfare of aquatic species, non-animal science and the conservation of wild animals, among others.

These were five intense years of fighting for better animal welfare. We have seen overwhelming civil mobilisation, which shows the willingness of EU citizens to better protect animals at an EU level. We need legislation that protects all animals, including aquatic ones, which are currently unprotected. We have yet to see a ban on cages, on fur farms, and fur products in the EU market,

MEP Caroline Roose (Greens/EFA, FR), Vice President of the Intergroup

Without the civil society - the ECIs, campaigns and other initiatives - we wouldn’t have been so strong. We require species-specific legislation, for example for octopus, and other animals which are unprotected. We must continue to bring animal welfare on the table in important discussions,

MEP Sirpa Pietikäinen, (EPP, FI) Honorary President of the Intergroup

As 300 million animals continue to suffer in cages, we need the European Commission to deliver on the End the Cage Age ECI. We need to push for a roadmap for a transition to non-animal science, and a ban on the transport of vulnerable animals

MEP Niels Fuglsang (S&D, DK), Vice-President of the Intergroup
From left to right: MEPS Francisco Guerreiro, Tilly Metz, Caroline Roose, Sirpa Pietikäinen, Senior Political Advisor at Eurogroup for Animals Andreas Erler and IFAW Representative Filip Molnár