February 24, 2016
In a Historic Move, Guatemala’s Congress Will Hear Animal Welfare Legislation
Humane Society International/Latin America urges swift passage of the landmark animal protection proposal
The Guatemalan Congress accepted and has scheduled a hearing for draft animal protection legislation submitted by animal activists, the first time such a proposal will be heard by the body. The draft Animal Welfare Law would protect wildlife, animals used in research and companion animals in Guatemala. It specifically prohibits dog fighting, as well as participating as a spectator in a dog fight.
Cynthia Dent, executive director of Humane Society International/Latin America, said: “Guatemala begins a historic process with the hearing of the animal welfare legislation this Thursday in the Agriculture Commission. We will work with Guatemalan officials to address social violence through the implementation of a zero tolerance stance on animal cruelty.”
The draft legislation is the result of a yearlong campaign involving the University of San Carlos, Humane Society International, the Ministry of Agriculture, the National Counsel of Protected Areas and ARCAS, all of whom were involved in drafting the legislation. During an event attended by activists and lawmakers, Dr. Carlos Alvarado, rector of the University of San Carlos, officially delivered the legislation to the president of the Legislative Assembly Mario Taracena, who lauded the initiative and urged the inclusion of the prohibition against cockfighting.
In remarks given during the event, Dr. Alvarado pointed out the important connection between social violence and violence against animals, saying that an animal welfare law would be the first step to help curb social violence.
Raúl Arce-Contreras, email@example.com, +1 301.721.6440