Dear Colombian Congress: Animals count on you!

On July 20th, the Colombian new Congress (comprising the Senate and House of Representatives) started the new legislative period 2022-2026. 

SOS Animals Colombia congratulated all candidates that included animal welfare programmes within their political agenda and took the opportunity to share with them an open letter entitled: ‘Animals count on you’.

The letter was drafted with the support of different animal welfare organisations and experts in the field and outlined some of the main challenges for animals in Colombia.

The four-page document proposed solutions to improve the living conditions of all animals, including animals used for consumption and experimentation, where there are enormous legislative gaps.

Furthermore, through the letter, SOS Animals Colombia announced the commitment to help build an animal welfare coalition within Congress to bring more dialogue and knowledge about animal welfare to the institution.

“Campaign promises need to get materialized in greater and better living conditions for animals of all species. They will be making laws to protect them and exercise political control over the government”, said Cecilia Angulo, founder and director of SOS Animals Colombia.    

The letter is available is Spanish here

Colombia: one step closer to banning bullfighting

On April 19 the draft law 410/2020C, which seeks to prohibit bullfighting practices in Colombia, was approved by the House of Representatives with 78 votes in favor and 17 against, representing a major step forward in the fight against bullfighting.

Unlike previous versions of the draft law, the focus of this new one is on the rights of animals and their status as subjects of special protection, through the recognition of the most basic right of all: the right to exist and not be subjected to cruel treatment.

The document was drafted with inputs from SOS Animals Colombia’s alies RAYA and the UPPAA Association (Union for Animal and Environmental Protection) and international organisations such as Animal Defenders International (ADI), which are part of the Colombia Sin Toreo Coalition, who are leading calls for the abolition of bullfighting in Colombia.

“This is only the second time in seven attempts that we have managed to get it out in two debates, so we are very happy today. We must celebrate the fact that our Congress is evolving in terms of animal rights, and recognize the important support this cause has from many lawmakers in Congress” said Juan Carlos Losada, Representative to the Chamber for Bogotá and a co-author of the project.

In addition to specifically prohibiting corridas, becerradas and corralejas, all different types of fighting practices, the draft law proposes an economic compensation for the people are involved in these activities.

The next step before the draft becomes law is to go through two more debates, one in Commission I and another in the Senate, This must be done before the end of the current session of Congress on June 20. If it doesn’t happen, the draft risks being archived and the whole process will need to start over again.

If you are in favor of prohibiting these violent practices in Colombia, do not forget to sign the petition created by the Colombia Sin Toreo coalition, which is available here