A consultation into legislation to ban the use of wild animals in travelling circuses in Wales has been launched today by Lesley Griffiths.
The eight week consultation will seek the public’s views of the proposed Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses (Wales) Bill.
There are no circuses using wild animals based in Wales, but when they do visit there are renewed calls to ban the practice.
A previous public consultation exploring the possible licensing of Mobile Animal Exhibits, where views were also sought about the use of wild animals in circuses, found overwhelming support for a ban.
Travelling circuses have toured the United Kingdom for over two hundred years and will continue to be welcome in Wales, but they will not be permitted to use wild animals under the Bill.
Cabinet Secretary for Energy, Planning and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths said:
“We believe that wild animals should be treated with dignity and respect as sentient beings, and not objectified or perceived as commodities for our entertainment.
“A ban will send a clear message that the people of Wales believe this practice to be an outdated notion and ethically unacceptable.
“We want future generations of children and young people to develop respectful and responsible attitudes towards animals. I would urge everyone with an interest to give their views on our proposals and take part in the consultation.
“It is important to stress the Bill is not about the use of all animals in circuses or other forms of entertainment, but instead the use of wild animals in travelling circuses in Wales.”
The consultation will be open to responses until 26 November 2018.