United Against Hunting

My name is Vinny. Two years ago I stood in the 2017 General Election. This year, I’m back and I’m more determined to be a voice for countryside creatures than ever.

Did you know there are 191 fox hunts operating in Great Britain today, 14 years after the Hunting Act 2004 was enacted that outlawed the practice.

That means that in total, hunts can go out almost 10,700 times a year – and each time a fox’s life is put at risk, even though 85% of people in this country, like me, believe that fox hunting should be illegal.

I believe in a kinder world where compassion for animals is an integral part of society. One where us voiceless animals are supported and protected from persecution in the name of ‘sport’. I encourage everyone of all backgrounds and political opinions to speak up for animals – together we can lead the way to a future where animals live free from the cruelty of hunting with dogs.

Ask your general election candidates where they stand on fox hunting and strengthening the Hunting Act by taking action with me.

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I thought hunting was already banned?

Although the ground-breaking Hunting Act was brought into force in 2005, hunts continue to chase and kill my wildlife companions – supposedly in the name of ‘sport’ – by exploiting loopholes in the law. With 191 fox hunts still in operation, there are almost 10,700 opportunities for hunts to meet – each of which provides an opportunity for another animal to become a victim of their cruel activity.

The only way to deliver an effective hunting ban is to strengthen the existing one – which is why I am campaigning today.

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What relevance does hunting have in an election all about Brexit?

Although hunting mammals with dogs has been banned for so many years now, it most definitely still continues.

In the last general election when Theresa May announced she would support a repeal of the hunting ban, I could barely believe my ears. My Votes for Vinny campaign was one of the most prominent topics of conversation during the election – more so than Brexit! Subsequently, Theresa May lost a hefty number of votes for her party.

This December I am hoping that all candidates will acknowledge Britain’s desire to see us animals given the protection we deserve – they can begin to do so by committing to secure and strengthen the Hunting Act.

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Vinny, what are you asking politicians to do?

I am calling on our future leaders to secure and strengthen the Hunting Act by removing those loopholes which are used by hunts to justify the chasing and killing wildlife.

I am certain that changes to the law simply must be made. Amongst others, I propose the following:

  • The use of dogs underground should be prohibited.

I know that it is not only us wildlife that are the victims of hunting. Sending dogs underground to find us is a nasty business and both us and the dogs can end up with some serious injuries.

  • A ‘reckless’ provision should be inserted to stop hunters using the false alibi of trail hunting

During these so-called ‘trail’ hunts, the hounds are still chasing and killing my friends. A recklessness clause will allow the huntsmen to be punished for hesitating to call their hounds off and risking our lives when the hounds are in chase.

  • Sentencing powers should be increased and prison sentences introduced.

Would you believe that currently prison sentences are not given to those who illegally hunt? This needs to be in line with other animal welfare legislation.

  • Removing the Observation and Research exemption that is consistently abused by stag hunts.

This loophole in the legislation has been used by stag hunts to justify chasing deer for over 5 hours straight – including pregnant mothers and their fawns. Not a single piece of research has resulted from these extended pursuits. I’m confident that it is time to take this exemption out of the law.

Our future leaders need to make a firm commitment to protecting our wildlife. They need to listen to overwhelming view of the country. They must secure and strengthen the Hunting Ban.

Take action

What can I do?

It’s very simple. My animal friends and I need you to contact your candidates and ask them to stand for securing and strengthening the hunting act. Animal welfare is a vote winning issue, they’d be fools not to!

Contact your local candidates today.

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