Plaid Cymru has said the legislation to ban the use of wild animals in travelling circuses published by the Welsh Government today is long-overdue.
Llyr Gruffydd AM, the party’s Shadow Minister for Animal Welfare said:
“The Welsh Government has been talking about this legislation for many years. It wasted time waiting for the UK Government to legislate on its behalf before deciding in 2016 that it had to act itself. It has still taken another three years for this Bill to be tabled. It’s long-overdue, but at least now we have a proposal to scrutinise and hopefully eventually implement.
“Plaid Cymru has consistently called for a ban on the use of wild animals in travelling circuses and it was a key commitment in our election manifesto in 2016. A Government consultation last year showed that 97% of respondents backed legislation to introduce a ban. The Assembly has received a number of petitions on the issue and it has been raised and debated regularly in the Senedd in recent years.
“I pay tribute to my constituent Linda Joyce Jones and others who have campaigned tirelessly over many years for this change. Scotland became the first country in the UK to introduce a ban in 2017, and last year the Republic of Ireland followed suit. It’s about time Wales caught up.
“There’s a compelling case for a ban on ethical grounds, so let’s hope this year will be the last summer when we see wild animals in travelling circuses that visit Wales.”