VANCOUVER, B.C. – Green Councillor Pete Fry will introduce a motion this week asking Council to affirm a commitment to progressive animal welfare standards. His motion asks staff to report back with recommendations on how to incorporate animal welfare language into the City’s Ethical Purchasing Policy.
Fry’s motion further directs staff to review and revise Vancouver’s Supplier Code of Conduct to ensure that City suppliers and their subcontractors will operate within recognized animal welfare accreditation standards.
“It’s just the right thing to do,” said Fry. “I strongly believe the city should choose the most ethical option available in every decision it makes, and typically those ethical options are often the most sustainable and environmentally responsible too.”
Fry’s motion recognizes that the City will continue to sponsor events that serve animal food products; or contract pest removal companies; or hire animal related businesses.
“We have to control pests, but do we need to use lazy, cruel, and indiscriminate glue traps when a snap trap will do? When we serve a meal we make sure it’s fair trade and environmentally sustainable, so why wouldn’t we make sure we considered a minimum standard of animal welfare.”
Animal welfare refers to the scientific assessment of an animal’s physical and mental state in relation to its quality of life. In the Lower Mainland, animal welfare practices have been under recent scrutiny after hidden camera footage and allegations detailing horrific abuses at certain local farms.
“Too often animals are harmed or suffer needlessly as a result of the products and services we buy. As a city, we should be cognizant of this and principled when it comes to our purchasing power.
“I hope this motion raises the city’s standards, but also starts a broader conversation about the different options out there; there are dedicated animal welfare accreditation and certification programs working tirelessly with businesses to raise standards and prevent unnecessary cruelty.
“We can’t eliminate all harm but we can prevent needless suffering; I’m asking the city to lead by example when it comes to ethical and humane practices.”