Let our voice be heard
Slaughter without stunning: GAIA files lawsuit against Brussels Region and calls on politicians to take responsibility.
12 March 2024

A significant loophole in the new Brussels Animal Welfare Codex

The Brussels Animal Welfare Codex, which is expected to be voted on soon by the Parliament and should provide better protection for animals in the future, still does not contain a provision banning slaughter without stunning. And this despite some 30,000 animals being slaughtered without stunning in Brussels every year.

This omission is unacceptable for animal rights organization GAIA. The recent favourable ruling on the issue by the European Court of Human Rights shows that it is high time to ban slaughter without stunning in the Brussels Capital Region as well.

Following the stubborn refusal to include a ban on slaughter without stunning in the new Animal Welfare Codex, GAIA has sued the Brussels Capital Region.

1 in 3 Brussels residents willing to vote for other party

A recent survey commissioned by GAIA (Ipsos, February 2024) shows that as many as 1 out of 3 Brussels residents (32%) would vote for a different party if the party they currently plan to vote for would not prohibit slaughter without stunning.

The survey also confirms that almost 8 out of 10 Brussels residents (77%) either support a ban on slaughter without stunning or do not have an opinion on it.

Finally, the survey shows that almost all Brussels residents (93%) care about animals and their wellbeing.

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As a reminder, the Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE), which includes more than 300 000 practising veterinarians, and the Belgian Union Professionnelle Vétérinaire agree that slaughter without stunning is "unacceptable" in all circumstances. Let us also remember that not only the Court of Justice of the European Union and the Belgian Constitutional Court, but also the European Court of Human Rights have ruled that a ban on slaughter without stunning does not violate freedom of religion and does not constitute a form of discrimination.

Every animal that is slaughtered without stunning goes through intense and prolonged suffering, with cattle suffering up to 14 minutes of agony.