STOP LIVE EXPORTS rallies hailed as great success.
An estimated 100,000 people gathered across Australian cities and regional centres to demand an end to the live export trade. Senators Bob Brown and Christine Milne were among the crowd in Tasmania.
The amazing outpouring of grief and compassion arose from yet another exposure of the brutal treatment of Australian animals in importing countries, this time in Indonesian slaughterhouses.
In Hobart, an estimated 400 people attended to hear speakers Senator Bob Brown, Greens spokesperson for Primary Industries Kim Booth, veterinarian Andrew Nicholson and Independent Member for Denison Andrew Wilkie address the rally.
The State Secretary of the Australian Meat Industry Employees’ Union (AMIEU), Grant Courtney, had been expected to attend , but was unable to get a flight from the mainland. Mr Courtney sent a comprehensive statement which was read out by rally organiser Suzanne Cass, together with messages of support from us in QCA and from a Muslim friend.
Tasmania organiser Suzanne Cass said :
On a personal level, I would like to thank, from the bottom of my heart, the people who came together in defence of these animals, and our fine speakers’, she said. ‘The funds raised will be distributed for live export campaign activities’.
The Hobart rally was one of dozens held across the country in response to the ‘Four Corners’ program ‘A bloody business’ screened three weeks ago, which shocked Australians to the core, and left many weeping, and others saying that they would stop eating meat altogether. The program showed Australian cattle being placed in MLA/LiveCorp slaughter boxes, having their legs roped to trip them to fall heavily on their sides, with the animals bashing their heads on concrete floors. Some were beaten on the face with chains, kicked, had their tails broken, and were tortured for up to half an hour before being clumsily killed by having their necks slashed at with blunt knives up to 30 times. Ms Cass said that she was horrified that cattle producers were demanding compensation after the Federal Government suspended the trade to Indonesia, as well as wanting to immediately resume the trade.
‘These people are clearly content to keep sending animals they claim to ‘love’ to this sort of torture, Neither they, the Federal Government nor MLA can be trusted, and neither can, or will, provide any sort of guarantee of protection for these animals’, she said. ‘They have all known about this torture for decades. Moreover, it must be remembered that each and every night since the ‘Four Corners’ program, cattle continue to be slaughtered in the same obscene fashion.
‘The only solution to the cruelty and torture inflicted on animals in all importing destinations is to stop this trafficking in animal suffering immediately. New Zealand stopped its trade without economic hardship, and Australia needs to do the same.
‘Every decent Australian is bitterly ashamed of the Australian government, and of the farmers who continue to feed this trade. It isn’t that long ago that another trade in sentient beings was deemed acceptable on trade grounds, and “if we don’t do it, others will’. This is what this Federal government will be remembered for.