World Society for the Protection of Animals

UPDATED 06/05/10: Vote for the voiceless this election

At the Food Animal Initiative (FAI) farm in Wytham, UK, a herd of 120 pedigree Saler and Saler X is kept. The breed has been chosen for its ease of calving, good mothering ability and longevity

In the run up to the general election on Thursday 6 May, WSPA needs you to quiz your local candidates on their commitment to animals. Please let your potential MP know that animals matter to you.

Thank you for speaking up for those without a voice in this election.

WSPA UK also wrote to all the potential parliamentary candidates (PPCs) setting out its three priority election issues and the results are now in!

How did the parties respond?

The Green Party has the most comprehensive animal welfare policies as laid out in their election manifesto, and 107 of their PPCs from across the UK responded to our candidates’ survey, which you can find on our dedicated microsite, Vote for the Voiceless.

However, when looking solely at the three main parties, the results show that the Liberal Democrats were the most responsive with a 47.5 per cent response rate, compared with Labour at 38 per cent and the Conservatives trailing at just 14.5 per cent.

Suzi Morris, WSPA UK Director said: “I think the response stats are very interesting – I would have expected more from both Labour and the Conservatives, given their election manifesto pledges – but it turned out that the Liberal Democrats were the most active in responding to our campaign.”

Read the full story online at or at the WSPA UK Facebook page >>

WSPA needs you

We have three questions for you to ask, along with a little background on each.

The three issues of most importance to WSPA UK during the general election process concern the future of countless suffering bears, whales and farm animals.

  • Dairy farming – the threat of industrial-scale dairy farming being adopted in the UK. Read the Daily Mail article about the Nocton Dairies recent application for a proposed ‘super dairy’ which will place 8,100 cows in a vast indoor dairy farm.

  • Bear farming – making sure that the new UK government renews Britain’s support for an end to cruel bear bile farming in Asia.

  • Whaling – pledging to uphold the UK’s firm anti-whaling stance during the EU bloc vote at the International Whaling Commission meeting in June and ensuring that the UK does everything in its power to prevent a return to commercial whaling.

Suzi added: “Whichever party wins, you can be sure that WSPA will work hard to hold them to the pledges they have made. In the next couple of months in particular, we will be expecting our new government to do everything in its power to uphold the commercial whaling ban, so we don’t see a return to commercial whaling. We will also be pressing for close scrutiny of the animal welfare and wider concerns thrown up by the Nocton Dairies planning application in Lincolnshire and what it represents for the future of British dairy farming.”


You can read our three questions and corresponding background information in full online or download to show to your local candidates.

There is also a poster for you to download – please display it proudly in your window, so canvassers know animals matter to you.

Do remember that not all local candidates will be familiar with the animal welfare issues we are asking you to raise with them, so please keep our useful poster to hand when asking for their views – you could be the one to engage your local candidate on an important animal welfare issue!

WSPA UK has prepared a handy guide to the main political parties' animal welfare sections of their manifestos, which you can read online or download to print out and keep.

Finally, the BBC asked the public - what would we do if we had the keys to number 10, what would be our one policy that mattered most? WSPA UK Director, Suzi Morris responds, giving our our views on why we think the Nocton Dairies planning application should not be allowed to go ahead>>


More information on the election

WSPA is a politically neutral organisation and it is not our aim to tell you who to vote for; that decision is yours alone.

However, we do hope that by quizzing your local candidates and hearing their views on animal welfare issues that matter to WSPA UK, you will be able to make a decision that benefits both people and animals alike.

Read more about our work on farm animal welfare >>

Find out more about our work to end the cruel practice of bear bile farming >>

Get more information on our work against commercial whaling >>


© World Society for the Protection of Animals
Tel: +44 (0)20 7239 0500. Email:
UK Registered Charity Number 1081849.