Wolverhampton North East MP has hailed the progress of new legislation to introduce tougher sentences for animal cruelty, as it passed all of its stages in the House of Commons last week.
Jane has been sitting on the Bill Committee which has carried the Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill through the Commons, and it will now go to the House of Lords before becoming law.
The legislation, dubbed ‘Finn’s Law Part 2, will increase the maximum custodial penalty for animal cruelty offences from six months to five years. It follows a successful campaign in 2019 to make it an offence to harm animals in the line of duty, such as police dogs. The Government subsequently introduced legislation to protect service animals, known as ‘Finn’s Law’.
Finn is a police dog who was attacked along with his owner PC Dave Wardell in October 2016 whilst attempting to arrest someone. Finn was awarded the PDSA Gold Medal for Bravery, and both Finn and PC Wardell appeared on Britain’s Got Talent. They have led the campaign to protect service animals and now want to see tougher punishments for animal cruelty.
As the owner of two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Jane has made the prevention of animal cruelty one of her top priorities in Parliament.
She said: “I am absolutely delighted that the Animal Welfare Bill has made it through all of its stages in the House of Commons, and I was honoured to serve on the committee which oversaw this. Toughening custodial sentences for animal cruelty offences is the right thing to do, and I know this means a lot to so many pet owners.
“I thank the Government for supporting the legislation and allowing time for it to be debated. As a nation of animal lovers, it cannot be right that we currently have some of the lowest sentences for these offences in the world. So I am pleased that we are one step closer to introducing tougher sentences for animal cruelty.”