Scotland for Animals is conducting a campaign to get mandatory, independently monitored CCTV into all abattoirs in Scotland.
Animals are suffering horrendous cruelty, now, as you read this. We can't stress enough how urgently we need to act.
SfA works to build a nation where all animals can live in freedom and safety. This includes the right not be be bred, reared and slaughtered for food.
However, so long as animals are subject to these practises, we're sure you'll agree that this must happen with suffering minimised where possible. This is where CCTV comes in.
Mandatory, independently monitored CCTV will at least greatly increase the chances that legal protections for animals and staff are adhered to.
in 2013 Scotland for Animals were expelled from the Cross-Party Group on Animal Welfare at Holyrood for exposing the spreading of misinformation by government and high level collusion to keep CCTV out of abattoirs.
A powerful meat lobby and career politicians are working hand in hand to fight this campaign at every turn.
Together we can beat them.
Undercover investigations by organisations such as Hillside Animal Sanctuary show animals being beaten, stabbed, burned, electrocuted and terrorised during the slaughter process. In footage it isn't enough that the animals are in pain, they are also humiliated while they are tortured by laughing staff.
The content of these films supports testimony by slaughterhouse workers provided in confidential contacts with Scotland for Animals. This is not an anomaly, it's the everyday reality of slaughter in the UK.
UK abattoirs are a free-for-all of brutality and violence.
The industry and government claims that implementing mandatory, independently monitored CCTV would put people out of work. This claim is baseless.
The union UNISON are among the supporters of Scotland for Animals' campaign.
Surveys have indicated that violence and abuse is endemic in the slaughter business. Information points to CCTV improving not only animal welfare but staff welfare.
We also have support from the cosmetics giant Lush and groups such as those campaigning for CCTV in care homes to prevent abuse of the elderly and vulnerable.
Scotland for Animals recently visited the largest pig slaughterhouse in Europe. This plant has a similar CCTV system in place to that which we are calling for. Fitting and running costs comparitavely are very low however the positive impact on animals and staff is substantial.
England has announced a consultation on introducing mandatory CCTV. While a move in this direction is welcome changes would still leave monitoring very much 'in house'.
We believe that restricting footage access to the same authorities which appear to be struggling to control abattoirs in real time will not solve the problem. Monitoring must include bodies independent of government agencies and business operators.
We know that the situation in Scotland's slaughterhouses means that it is very difficult for staff to prevent or report animal abuse. We also know from the contact we have with them that there are many who are sick of the cruelty they see every day in their workplaces but due to intimidation or threats of sacking are powerless to take action.
If you are one of these workers we have your back. Contact us in confidence at firstname.lastname@example.org
WHAT CAN I DO?
As a result of pressure the Scottish Government has announced a public consultation on abattoir CCTV.
Please stand up for the millions of animals slaughtered in Scotland every year, contact your MSPs to demand that they push for legislation
Remember doing nothing changes nothing, but actions large & small facilitate change. Your voice can help us get there quicker.
- Support Scotland for Animals' campaign.
- Order our free CCTV campaign materials for your workplace, school, library etc. Get your friends and family involved too.
- You can ask your MSPs and government to take note of your concerns and request they take action and request them to support a legal amendment in order to make independently monitored CCTV mandatory in all of Scotland's slaughterhouses.
WHAT SHOULD I SAY?
You only need to send a short email. It's always important to put any message in your own words but you can base any contact on the following:
'I am writing regarding the introduction of mandatory, independently monitored CCTV in slaughterhouses. I request that you take action to ensure that this is implemented, in all areas where animals can be present, as a matter of urgency. This should be in addition to on-site monitoring.
I understand that practicalities involved would not be prohibitive.'
For your MSPs go here , To contact the Scottish Goverment email email@example.com
You can also include that if they need further information on the subject Scotland for Animals will be available to assist.
Make sure you include your full name and postal address.
Remember, Ministers and MSPs work for you. You pay their wages, don't take any nonsense.
WHAT ABOUT FUNDING?
We desperately need funds to make this campaign effective. Please consider making an urgent donation.
Support for Scotland for Animals' campaign
Guy Cowan, Chef to the Stars
"I support SfA's campaign to get CCTV into abattoirs. I want to know that the meat I supply my discerning customers is of top quality. And food animal welfare greatly contributes to that."
Careworker, Bob Mason
"Having grown up next to a Scottish abattoir, I have seen first-hand the barbarity that goes on when the workers think no one is watching. The people on the kill floor were known as the "blood boys", a fitting title as they routinely battered animals in line for slaughter. Today, I don't believe things have improved. In fact I think they have become increasingly worse as the demand for higher kills per hour rises with the mass-production of meat. It's a de-humanising job in which the worker is also at risk of abuse from colleagues and psychological damage due to the bullying environment and constant scenes of violence. As a care-worker, I strongly believe that the helpless and vulnerable, be they human or animal, deserve our respect and care. Installing CCTV in all slaughterhouses would aid in the reduction of excessive cruelty and distress for animals. Ultimately, evil men do things only because the good men do not speak!"
"UNISON Scotland represents Meat Hygiene Inspectors and vets in food production plants. We would welcome the introduction of independently monitored CCTV in slaughterhouses. This will help maintain high regulatory standards that are being threatened by the deregulatory policies of both the European Commission and Scottish Government."
Don't Lose Your Grip, Mental Health Charity
"CCTV is as vital to employees safety and wellbeing as the health and safety procedures already in place. The fact that CCTV is not already in place in slaughter houses absolutely baffles me. People have the right to go to work and feel safe in their workplace, regardless of the field that they work in."
Your Voice Matters. "Promoting Care With Dignity and Respect" - Jenny Moore, Founder
"Those who have no voice are easy targets for neglect and abuse. Those who want to speak out to protect them are silenced. If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear. I see no reason why CCTV cannot be installed in slaughterhouses. Like every form of business inspection, they judge with what they see on the day, what about the other days of the year? For me personally it starts at the top and if the top person of the company is rotten, it follows right through onto the ‘shop floor'. The elderly in care homes and animals in slaughterhouses are the victims and we need CCTV installed to protect them. They have no voice, we do."
Juanita Wilson, Founder, Mossburn Animal Sanctuary
"I have run an animal rescue centre in Dumfries and Galloway for the last twenty five years and before that I had a small charity concerned with the welfare of equines. During these years I have given many students work experience placements, the most relevant to this campaign being student vets who have to do a compulsory placement in abattoirs. They have frequently told me about animals being brought into the abattoirs with broken legs who have then been beaten and kicked in order to make them move faster, other cases where electric probs are also used to speed the animals towards their deaths. Rough handling, rough language and totally unacceptable behaviour that has left the students upset and anxious about the cruelty displayed.
Cameras therefore are the only means by which the general conduct in abattoirs can be closely monitored."