Simon Coveney TD, Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine has signed the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013 (Commencement) Order 2014 which brings into operation the core elements of the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013.
Minister Coveney said that the Act brings the areas of both animal health and welfare together under one legislative framework for the first time. In this context, he went on to say “While in the past animal welfare and animal health may have been seen as separate issues, the Act recognises that they are closely related and in many cases inter-dependent and that synergy can be gained by bringing them together under one legislative roof. Where either health or welfare breaks down, it often has consequences for the other”
The Minister said that the Act, by placing the concepts of prevention, risk assessment and biosecurity at the heart of our legislation relating to animal health and welfare, puts Ireland to the fore of best international practice. Minister Coveney noted that the Act strengthens the already existing protections for animals in Irish Law. For the first time judges will be granted specific powers to prevent persons convicted of cruelty to, or failing to protect the welfare of animals from owning or working with animals.
Friday March 7, 2014/ Teagasc/ Ireland.