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Madeira Will Have An Animal Ombudsman

The Madeiran Parliament this morning debated the proposed regional legislative decree entitled ‘Animal Ombudsman in the Autonomous Region of Madeira,’ which has been co-authored in conjunction with the Portuguese Communist Party (PCP).

In his speech, Pedro Calado recalled that “Madeira was a pioneer at national level in the defence of animal welfare rights, being the first region in the country to ban, in 2016, the beating of animals and to implement a sterilisation programme, as well as create a financial support regime for animal protection associations.”

The Regional Government project, which will, by all accounts, be approved tomorrow, contemplates that “the Animal Ombudsman will be responsible for acting in support of the well-being of animals, dealing with complaints and acts and omissions practiced by any person, whether public or private entity, forwarding details to the competent authorities.”

However, the PS-Madeira, raised doubts about the ‘independence’ of any Animal Ombudsman in the region.  Responding to this, Pedro Calado assured everyone present that the ombudsman would be truly independent.

What a sad indictment of society that we have to have a law that forbids people from beating an animal, and as Mahatma Gandhi said: ‘the true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its most vulnerable members,’ and animals alongside children and the elderly make up society’s vulnerable members!

Samantha Gannon

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