RSPCA NSW welcomes parliamentary inquiry findings

RSPCA NSW welcomes the NSW Government response to the NSW parliamentary inquiry into the administration of state animal cruelty legislation. 

The NSW Government supports RSPCA NSW’s role in enforcing the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1979 (POCTAA). 

“This inquiry reinforces the relevance of RSPCA NSW in enforcing POCTAA, and we are pleased that the NSW Government has seen fit that our Inspectorate continues their vital work,” said RSPCA NSW CEO Steve Coleman.

“We welcome the recommendations made which we hope will build on the special skills, strengths and expertise our Inspectorate has developed over the last 90 years.”

“The inquiry has also put a spotlight on animal cruelty laws in NSW and what needs to be done to improve the welfare of animals in our state, and we are grateful for the opportunity to provide valuable insight into RSPCA NSW’s critical role in that.”

“RSPCA NSW continues to perform absolutely vital functions for the people and animals of NSW. Not only are we an enforcement agency, we are an organisation that delivers community education and assistance to animal owners in need, provides shelter and urgent treatment to animals and takes action in in the event of natural disasters.”

The report made the following recommendations: 

  • That the NSW Government consider a review of the use of body worn devices for the purposes of investigations into animal cruelty offences with a view to permitting such devices to be worn by officers of approved charitable organisations 
  • That the NSW Government consider increased penalties for animal cruelty offences 
  • That the NSW Government investigate data collection and sharing between enforcement agencies
  • That the NSW Government increase funding to more adequately resource and staff RSPCA NSW and AWL NSW inspectorates
  • That the NSW Government develop a quantitative funding model indexed with CPI 
  • That the NSW Government investigate and fund an education program for improving animal welfare outcomes 
  • That the NSW Government ensures that POCTAA and the animal welfare framework are overhauled to meet community expectations and understanding of animal welfare 
  • That the NSW Government reviews statutory time limits for the prosecution of animal cruelty-related crimes
  • That the NSW Government amends the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1979 to require approved charities to table their annual reports in both Houses of Parliament and comply with GIPA requests 

RSPCA NSW remains committed to the mission of preventing cruelty to animals and promoting animal welfare and looks forward to working with the NSW Government, enforcement agencies and the community to achieve these goals in the interest of all animals.