Wed 4 Sep, 2019

I hope ministers and MSPs will get behind the Fox and Hare bill so we can end this cruel bloodsport Alison Johnstone

Alison Johnstone’s proposed members bill is now MSPs' best chance to introduce a real ban on foxhunting, after SNP commitments to strengthen the laws did not appear in the programme for government.

A year ago Nicola Sturgeon promised to follow up on the Lord Bonomy review by strengthening the law, and then in January Mairi Gougeon pledged to bring forward a bill “during the course of the current parliamentary session”.

But no such bill appeared in this week’s programme for government.

Green MSP Alison Johnstone’s proposed Fox and Hare bill would close the existing loopholes which allow hunts to continue across Scotland. The consultation has received around 8,000 responses.

Commenting, Alison Johnstone said: “The promise from ministers to tackle the fact fox hunts still operate around Scotland wasn’t addressed in Nicola Sturgeon’s programme for government this week, so I am hopeful this means they support the proposals I launched this summer.

“There is enormous public interest in this issue, the response to my consultation has eclipsed that of any other member’s bill this session, and ministers have said they want to strengthen the law.

“My proposed bill is the clearest way to do that. I hope ministers and MSPs will get behind the Fox and Hare bill so we can end this cruel bloodsport.”

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