Rally against Live Exports – Parliament House, Melbourne, 14 August 2011

Lyn White of Animals Australia speaking

Lyn White of Animals Australia was one of the speakers at the Melbourne contribution to nationwide rallies on Sunday calling on the Australian Government to permanently ban live animal exports. (According to an Animals Australia press release, at a total of over 20,000 “[this] was the biggest rally for animals in Australia’s history and certainly exceeded all expectations.” Certainly the steps of Parliament House were jam-packed, and because the rally was confined to the steps and footpaths it was impossible to see the full extent from ground level.
Other speakers were RSPCA Victoria’s Dr Hugh Wirth and Adam Bandt, Greens Federal Member for Melbourne. The media were out in force, making something of a contrast with another rally later in the day, where they were marked by their absence (see following post of Save the Kimberley rally at the State Library). There were also a lot of dogs, large and small, as well as AA’s ambassador sheep Timmy.
There are text reports of the rally both on the Animals Australia website – http://www.animalsaustralia.org/features/thousands-rally-against-live-export.php and in the mainstream media – for example the ABC and The Australian. See also the Animals Australia Facebook page.

Some photos from the rally:

Hugh Wirth speaking on steps of Parliament House

Dr Hugh Wirth and Timmy


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Adam Bandt speaking - dog paying close attention

The dog at the right made a number of enthusiastic endorsements during the speeches. Timmy didn't seem to have much to say.


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Timmy looking around at the crowd before the rally

Timmy checking out the crowd


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Crowd on steps before start of the rally

Waiting for the rally to start


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Some of the placards:

Closeup of placard in previous shot - Stop this Cruelty
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Massive Livestock Abuse - MLA
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Hand-drawn sketch of cow - Please don't; forget us
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Placard with unflattering reference to Julia Gillard
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Part of the media scrum at the front of the crowd

The media were competing for the best vantage point


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Some views of the crowd:
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Crowd on steps viewed from front left
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Looking across crowd at top of steps
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Looking down over crowd towards Windsor Hotel from top of steps
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Little dog at start of rally, 'guarding' stack of placards

Little dog before the rally...


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Golden retriever on steps after the rally

Big dog after the rally ...

Ban Live Exports – rally at Parliament House, Melbourne, 18 June 2011

Following the showing on ABC 4 Corners of footage taken in Indonesian abattoirs, protest rallies were held around Australia to reinforce popular demand for a permanent ban on live export of cattle to that country (the Government did in fact impose a temporary ban almost immediately, in response to universal outrage at what was revealed). Speakers at the rally on the steps of Parliament in Melbourne ranged from politicians Sue Pennicuik of the Greens and Kelvin Thompson of the ALP, to Lefki Pavlidis of the World Preservation Foundation, Shatha Hamade of the Barristers Animal Welfare Panel, Pam Ahern, founder of Egdar’s Mission animal sanctuary, and Patty Mark, founder of Animal Liberation Victoria. MC was Ron Prasad, supported by Felicity Andersen to lead the chanting, with cellist Jonathan Tosio and singer Ruby Page. Timmy the ‘ambassador sheep’ from Edgar’s Mission was also present…
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Accounts in mainstream media gave attendance figures from 500 (The Age and Sydney Morning Herald – both from AAP) to 1500 (Herald Sun), the latter being probably rather low …
As can be seen in the accompanying video extracts, some speakers went much further than the nominal demand of the rally in calling for not just a ban on live exports, but an end to the meat industry itself, on both humane and environmental grounds, and there was obvious and loud vocal support from at least part of the crowd, evidenced also in the number of vegan banners and placards.
Also just visible at the start of the first video are representatives of a different viewpoint, in the person of two dairy farmers in South Gippsland holding placards reading “Ban animal cruelty not live exports’ – see report in Weekly Times Now.
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The two video extracts given here complement coverage on the websites of Animal Liberation Victoria, where founder Patty Mark’s address can be viewed, and Edgar’s Mission, with video of Pam Ahern:

Patty Mark – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fa48zLxkBU8&

Pam Ahern – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h8Qh86d19fw&

More links:

http://www.facebook.com/animalliberationvictoria

http://www.facebook.com/edgarsmission

http://www.alv.org.au/

http://www.edgarsmission.org.au/