It’s Time for Theresa May to Take Action on Circuses
As Parliament comes back into session this week, Britain’s animal-protection groups – including PETA – are asking the Prime Minister to roll up her sleeves and finally ban cruel wild-animal circuses.
Our letter – signed by the RSPCA, Animal Justice Project, the Born Free Foundation, Animal Defenders International, Viva!, Animal Aid, and the Captive Animals Protection Society – reminds Theresa May that the government promised to ban archaic animal performances in England and Wales by January 2015 but, despite evidence that 94 per cent of the public support such a ban, has failed to introduce any legislation.
Now, the Prime Minister has the chance to make good on David Cameron’s broken promise.
Many countries – including Austria, Bolivia, Bulgaria, the Netherlands, Mexico, Serbia, and Singapore – have implemented bans or prohibitions on the use of wild-animal acts. The UK, a nation that prides itself on high animal-welfare standards, is now lagging woefully behind.
Trainers often break the spirits of wild animals used in circuses at a young age so that they will perform absurd tricks such as balancing on balls or jumping through hoops. And it’s widely recognised by vets and animal-behaviour experts that travelling circuses can never adequately provide for these animals’ welfare needs. Lions, tigers, and other wild animals exhibit clear signs of frustration and distress when they’re kept in cramped cages for hours or days at a time – thousands of miles from their natural environment – and carted from show to show.