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Record-breaking European Citizens’ Initiative calls on the EU to ban cages

News Section Icon Published 12/09/2019

EN ECI Citizens

As of today, 12 September 2019, the largest European petition ever for farm animal welfare has just closed, breaking the record for balanced representation of voices across the EU. The End the Cage Age European Citizens’ Initiative has, subject to validation, surpassed the minimum threshold required by EU law in 21 EU Member States – a first in the history of European Citizens’ Initiatives! This direct democracy tool has also collected over 1.6 million signatures!

Today, the seven EU citizens that organised this Initiative have sent a letter to the new European Commission President and the relevant Commissioners-designate, calling on them to “set a fresh and progressive tone to EU policy making” and to put an end to the use of cages in farming.

This Initiative is supported by over 170 NGOs. It aims to end the use of cages for farm animals across the continent. Over 300 million pigs, hens, rabbits, ducks quail and calves are imprisoned in cages across the EU. Most cages are barren, cramped, and deny the animals space to move freely. Cages are cruel and completely unnecessary.

“The signatures collected for the European Citizens’ Initiative to End the Cage Age have, subject to validation, surpassed the minimum threshold set-out by EU law in 21 countries,” said Olga Kikou, Head of Compassion in World Farming EU. This is a first in the history of European Citizens’ Initiatives and it’s amazing to see this happen! It’s absolutely clear that citizens from all corners of Europe truly care about farm animals and want to set them free from the nightmare of being locked up in cages!”

“This European Citizens’ Initiative is the biggest political push in farm animal welfare history,” continued Olga. “We expect that the new European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will set a fresh and progressive tone to EU policymaking and prove to the world that the EU is indeed the leader in farm animal welfare. This time the EU should listen to its citizens and end the use of cruel and outdated cages for farm animals, once and for all!”