Pauline Latham OBE MP, who is a long time campaigner against the Ivory trade, welcomes the Ivory Bill, which is to be introduced to Parliament today. This legislation will be the toughest in Europe and indeed one of the toughest in the world.
The introduction of this Bill means that robust measures which were set out by the Environment Secretary Michael Gove are a step closer to becoming law, and helping to protect elephants for future generations.
The Bill covers ivory items of all ages. The maximum penalty for breaching the ban will be an unlimited fine or up to five years in jail. The Bill follows widespread engagement with environmental groups and the antiques trade sector as well as the general public. More than 70,000 people and organisations responded to Defra’s consultation on an ivory ban late last year, with over 88% of responses in favour of measures to ban ivory sales in the UK.
Pauline said, “I am extremely pleased to see that this Bill has been introduced to Parliament. For many years I have campaigned on this issue. I passionately believe in the importance of banning ivory to protect Elephants, which are truly majestic animals.
The number of elephants has declined by almost a third in the last decade and numbers continue to diminish. 20,000 elephants a year are still being slaughtered because of the global demand for ivory.
I am pleased with the leadership demonstrated by the UK Government in relation to the Ivory Trade and I do hope they continue showing such leadership to help tackle the illegal wildlife trade.”