General Election 2016 - Where do the candidates stand on animal cruelty issues?
'The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated' - Mahatma Gandhi
'Ultimately a great nation is a compassionate nation' - Martin Luther King
Before voting in the general election on Friday 26th February, read our guide to the candidates and where they stand on animal cruelty issues. Please make your vote count for the animals.
Individual candidate views may differ from official party policies, to which members are expected to follow in Dail Eireann. Click on the link to view party policies in relation to animal issues. Help us expand this list - let us know about responses you receive from candidates. If you are a candidate and wish to be included in this list, please get in touch with us now.
Cllr Catherine Ardagh (Fianna Fail, Dublin City Council)
"Yes [I am in favour of a ban on foxhunting and hare coursing]." from a tweet to ICABS, October 2014.
Catherine Byrne, TD (Fine Gael, Dublin South Central):
In March 2013, Catherine Byrne voted against amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to secure a ban on some of Ireland's worst acts of cruelty to animals - foxhunting, hare coursing, digging out, terrierwork, ferreting, badger culling, fur farming and the use of animals in circus performances.
Eric Byrne, TD (Labour Party, Dublin South Central):
"I am sure that nobody likes to see or indeed put animals to death. I am a hillwalker and I hate to see those guys with their guns all dressed up like Army Rangers waiting to kill the deer." From an email to ICABS, December 2010.
Joan Collins, TD (People Before Profit, Dublin South Central):
In March 2015, Joan Collins asked the Minister for Agriculture "if he will initiate a new investigation and-or review into hare coursing, with a view to removing its exemption from prohibition under the Animal Health and Welfare Acts, and to bring Ireland into line with neighbouring jurisdictions, where it has criminal status"
"I will be supporting the [anti-coursing] bill that my United Left Alliance colleague, Clare Daly TD is working on." 7 February, 2012
The office of Joan Collins TD has confirmed that the Dublin South-Central Deputy "is in support of a ban on live hare coursing".
On 14 September 2011, Deputy Collins asked Minister Simon Coveney "his policy on hare coursing" and "his plans to ban this practice".
On 27th March 2013, Joan Collins supported amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to outlaw hare coursing, foxhunting, terrierwork, digging-out, ferreting and fur farming.
In May 2013, Joan Collins TD said she would boycott the National Wax Museum over a foxhunting-related discount. In a complaint to museum management, she said that with most people opposed to bloodsports, offering a 10 per cent discount when a hunt is mentioned "may backfire on the museum". "It's a promotion of a cruel bloodsport which many people, including myself, find offensive." she said. The discount was subsequently scrapped.
Cllr Maire Devine (Sinn Fein, South Dublin County Council)
"Tá [add me to the list of Sinn Fein politicians in favour of a ban on bloodsports]" from a tweet to ICABS, June 2015.
Michael Gargan (Renua, Dublin South Central)
"Yes I would be in favour of a ban on fox hunting and hare coursing." from a tweet to ICABS, January 2016.
Cllr Paul Hand (Independent, Dublin City Council)
"I support a ban on both [foxhunting and hare coursing]." from a tweet to ICABS, December 13th 2015.
Oisín Ó Halmhain (Green Party, Dublin South Central):
"We are opposed to fox hunting & hare coursing" from a tweet to ICABS, 19th January 2016.
Aengus O Snodaigh, TD (Sinn Fein, Dublin South Central):
On 24th March 2009, Aengus O Snodaigh, TD asked the Minister for Agriculture "if in the context of his responsibility for animal welfare and the legal protection of animals from cruelty, he will introduce legislation banning all blood sports including hare coursing and fox hunting". On 10th March, 2009, he asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government "if he will introduce legislation banning all blood sports including hare coursing and fox hunting".
Cllr Brid Smith (People Before Profit Alliance, Dublin City Council)
"I am with you on blood sports. They should be banned." from a tweet to ICABS, 29 March 2014.
"I love animals and would be passionate if elected as a TD in supporting Animal Welfare and Animal Rights. I am totally opposed to fox hunting, coursing and fur farming." in reply to Maynooth University's Animal Rights Society.
An Irish Council Against Blood Sports website
Visit our campaign website at www.BanBloodSports.com