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RSPCA Policy GP5 Human and animal welfare

5.1RSPCA Australia recognises the inextricable link between human welfare and animal welfare and the challenges posed by mental illness, interpersonal violence, homelessness, and other social issues.
5.2RSPCA Australia supports and encourages integrated, cross-agency collaboration to develop strategies for responding effectively to such issues and ensuring the necessary services are available to adequately cater for the welfare needs of both vulnerable people and animals.
5.3Animal cruelty and interpersonal violence
5.3.1RSPCA Australia recognises the empirical link between animal cruelty, child abuse, and domestic and interpersonal violence including its physical, psychological, and economic dimensions, and that cruelty to animals is a strong marker for other forms of violence.
5.3.2RSPCA Australia supports and encourages cross-agency collaboration to raise awareness of this link, to identify and investigate cases involving both animal cruelty and interpersonal violence, and to promote early intervention strategies.
5.3.3RSPCA Australia supports the development of systems for cross-reporting between the RSPCA, the veterinary profession, the police and relevant community service agencies.
5.3.4RSPCA Australia believes veterinarians, community service workers and other frontline staff should be trained and supported to identify and report suspected cases of animal cruelty.
5.3.5Where resources allow, the RSPCA aims to protect the welfare of animals at risk through domestic and interpersonal violence by providing appropriate emergency care and support and by working with key agencies to empower them to create more opportunities for companion animals to be accommodated at refuge centres and other emergency housing facilities.
5.3.6RSPCA Australia believes that relevant state and territory legislation should allow for the inclusion of companion animals in violence intervention/restraining orders.
5.3.7RSPCA Australia supports education programs that promote empathy and the humane treatment of animals for children who have been exposed to animal cruelty, domestic or other interpersonal violence.

(adopted 15/06/2020)

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Updated on June 25, 2020

RSPCA policies reflect the best available evidence to direct and guide RSPCA and others, to promote and achieve good animal welfare outcomes.

Reference to ‘the RSPCA’ or ‘RSPCA’ in this document means RSPCA Australia and each of the RSPCA Australia member Societies.

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