Frank O'Connor 2003 Freckled Duck

Letters To ALP Members Of Parliament

Dear ALP Members of Parliament

RE: DUCK SHOOTING SEASON TO GO AHEAD IN 2005

Contrary to claims over the last couple of years by certain MPs and the Secretary of the ALP Environment Policy Committee that the state Labor government has a policy to phase out duck shooting, Minister Thwaites recently announced in the Herald-sun on 23 December 2004 that there would be a duck shooting season this year. We note Minister Thwaites’ comment:

"While conditions for waterfowl have improved from last year, the total game bird population across the state remains low."

The question must be asked, why has the Minister therefore granted a one month increase on last year's season and increased the bag limit?

ALP Members Opposed to Duck Shooting (MoDS) developed a large support base within the ALP during its 2004 campaign seeking a ban on duck shooting. We intend to consolidate that support and ask that you consider this issue carefully in order that it be resolved within the Party. Politically, this is a particularly sensitive issue given that Victoria will be hosting the 2006 Commonwealth Games (during the usual duck shooting season) when the party's environmental credentials will be in the global spotlight.

Many of you are now well acquainted with the arguments against duck shooting, which include the fact that 70% of the public oppose duck shooting, the majority of duck shooters are city based, not country based, and that the number of shooters has reduced to around 17,500. The sport is cruel, has been banned in NSW and WA without any electoral damage and should be banned in Victoria, instead of being encouraged.

We look forward to you discovering the political will to end duck shooting in the state of Victoria.

Yours in solidarity

ALP Members Opposed to Duck Shooting

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Letter from Geoff Howard ALP Member of Parliament to the Minister for Environment forwarded to ALP MoDS by a member of the community

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