Animals are the best. They just are. Also, it’s nice to pet them (if they want you to. Consent always!).
WHAT DO YOU ACTUALLY DO?
"Our Work" page and our blog give a good overview of projects we are involved in. We definitely keep busy with an evolving list, with key focuses including working to ensure that animal concerns are factored into planning permissions for agricultural developments; working to influence the creation of law through involvement in government consultations; drafting complaints to regulatory bodies to ensure that those tasked with caring for animals do so; assisting other groups that undertake amazing work (such as groundbreaking judicial reviews). We’re always adding new stuff to our list, too; our motto apparently is “never cross things off your list, only add to it”. To stay on top of things, give our blog a read; it’s fun, we promise!
We try to think creatively about how the use of the law and our legal skills can help seek change for animals.
What we don't do:
We are not a law firm. We don't take on clients. Where we can, we work collaboratively with other groups that aren't lawyers, so we can assist them with our legal skills. (And, as you know by now, our sass.)
WHERE DOES MY MONEY GO IF I DONATE TO YOU?
Your very much appreciated donation could help across several facets of running TAAP. It might go to admin-y things: the cost of running this website, charges for email accounts, office supplies. Or it could pay for the costs involved in Freedom of Information requests. It might not sound terribly exciting, but it's VERY useful stuff!
Often, we need to pay for subscription fees to obtain certain information.
Sometimes, we may need to pay for expert opinions, for barristers, for researchers’ hourly wages, and other official professional costs like this. In future, we may have legal fees and court costs if we engage in litigation.
Where we have big projects with big outlays, we intend to be clear about the expenditure so that you can see where all the money is going.
If you have any specific questions, please do feel free to drop us a line.
As of now, our team is doing alllllll of this for free. We are all passionate about this work, and so we are happy to do it. But, it is unsustainable in the long term. We all have day jobs, which limit the amount of time we have to dedicate to TAAP (including limiting the time we have for charity fundraisers). Eventually, we would love to raise enough money to allow us to have full-time employees.
You’re probably wondering, work by day? animal advocacy by night? what about naps?
WHAT KIND OF LAWS ARE THERE? WHAT LAWS NEED CHANGE?
This is a good question! It doesn’t have an easy answer. Or a single one.
For one, lots of laws protect certain groups of animals, but some animals are completely unprotected by law. This is something we will work on.
As for what existing laws need to change, for a lot of animal law, it’s unclear what the best path forward would look like. This is because, across the UK and Ireland, there is poor enforcement of existing welfare legislation. Lots of groups and lots of actions in this sector focus on campaigning for and working on potential new laws for animal protection, but oftentimes, we don’t need those new laws that get everyone all excited. We already HAVE good laws on the books, they just get forgotten! Tossed aside! And not enforced! And if the laws aren’t being enforced or even remembered for their potential, we can't tell whether they are working (and makes us wonder why so much emphasis is put on new law) This is why our first step is usually to push for better enforcement. And better transparency about that enforcement.
WHERE DO YOU STAND ON OTHER ISSUES?
You’ll probably think of us as your quintessential lefty snowflakes. And we will own that shiz! Oh, you think calling us progressive will hurt our feelings? Is it bad to want the human race to progress and improve in all ways? Well, I’ll be damned! Snowflakes are unique and beautiful and they create a GODDAMN WINTER WONDERLAND.
Our ethos document sums us up pretty well. In short, we are aware of the wider social movement that animal advocacy sits within. It is crucial for us to do our best to understand broader social justice issues. Our own work should never cut across, or undermine, efforts to address these problems.
A quick run down of our position on some key, current issues:
Climate change - It’s happening. It’s real, babes, and it is NOT spectacular.
Veganism - necessary.
Black Lives Matter - yes. Flabbergasting that this statement has become a controversial one until you remember that it’s due to plain old racism never taking a holiday. We also must mention that the animal rights movement in many facets has had a nasty undercurrent of racism. We all need to work hard to address this.
Vaccinations - Get one. Get all of them! Yes, some have been tested on animals. That’s largely how our advanced sciences still work, unfortunately, and there's nothing to be done about that now. Let's stop people from dying so that we can work to end animal testing. Let’s also work to stop the usage and keeping of animals that caused Covid-19 in the first place. For more, read our letter to the editor.
Prisons - not, like, huge fans. We do talk a lot about the enforcement of the law. But there is no evidence that prison sentences for individual offences actually work for reform; in fact, there’s evidence that they exacerbate the issue sometimes. For corporations, head honchos of animal ag who sacrifice welfare for profit… punishment considerations are a bit different. The whole situation is a lot more nuanced than just to incarcerate or not incarcerate – we will write about this.
ARE YOU GUYS GOING TO MAKE THIS WEIRD? NOT JUST LICKING YOUR OWN NOSTRILS WEIRD…BUT ARE YOU GOING TO BE LIKE THOSE ANIMAL ACTIVISTS…FANATICS?
Well, modern culture definitely has its caricatures about "animal activists". We have two things to say about this:
1. The media (more often tabloids) and politicians often give us a really hard time, and unjustifiably so. Just have a read of our blog on the FOI process in Ireland for a taste. The mere act of protesting – a protected act, a core tenet of democracy – does not make protestors fanatics. Letting the media et al. convince you that protesting = crazy is so, so dangerously close to fascistic. Protesting is often the response to democratically elected representatives failing to listen to their constituents. We could talk about this ALL DAY, SON, so if you’d like to join in, get in touch!
2. Every movement will have a spectrum of views, and everyone will fall somewhere along it. But a whole movement cannot be characterised by picking one point on that spectrum and aligning everyone with those views.
It’s difficult to say where exactly we fit on that spectrum, because we’re all different, because everyone’s perception of events is different, and everyone’s perception of a person’s reaction to something is different! (We’re getting dizzy!) But generally, are we loud and bold? Yes! Are we willing to get in people’s faces to be heard? Yes! Are we in favour of violence? No.