FURNESS MP JOINS CHARITIES UNITED IN PROTECTING ANIMALS AND VULNERABLE PEOPLE FROM FIREWORKS TRAUMA
37 MPs attend fireworks coalition event in Westminster to discuss the impact on human and animal welfare
Ahead of Guy Fawkes Night, Simon Fell, the MP for Barrow and Furness, attended an event this week at the House of Commons, held by eleven charities united to highlight the need for a review of existing fireworks legislation and the harmful impact they have on animals and vulnerable people, and the potential for injury that arises due to the lack of regulation on sales.
Dogs Trust, Blue Cross, Battersea, British Veterinary Association, Cats Protection, Children’s Burns Trust, The Kennel Club, Combat Stress, PTSD UK, Dan’s Fund for Burns and Help for Heroes welcomed 37 MPs to the fireworks coalition event. They discussed how the law is failing to protect those affected by the unpredictable and loud noise of fireworks, and contributes to the unnecessary number of children, young people and adults injured every year by a firework, which is why they are calling on the UK Government to urgently review the current legislation.
The charities are calling the attention of the UK Government to conduct a review of existing fireworks legislation, and for change with a view to introduce further restrictions on where and when they can be used. Through better regulating the use of fireworks, the charities hope to limit the unnecessary distress and life-changing injuries that can be inflicted on so many people and animals during fireworks season, which often lasts many evenings around key events such as Guy Fawkes Night, Diwali and New Year’s Eve.
With many council run fireworks displays across the UK being cancelled owing to the cost of holding the events, the charities are concerned that there may be a rise in people holding firework displays at home, with no restrictions on where the fireworks are let off, who handles the fireworks, or for how long the noise will last.
Paula Boyden, Veterinary Director at Dogs Trust says:
“The unpredictable nature of the loud cracks and bangs of fireworks can be a terrifying ordeal for animals and people, and with fireworks often lasting many nights during the autumn, it can be terribly distressing for weeks on end.
“As charities, we can provide guidance to help people and animals cope with the noise, however we are asking the Government to play their part in reducing the unnecessary stress that fireworks season brings with it, to review the current legislation and make impactful changes to reduce the suffering for many.”
Commenting, Simon said:
“Every year around bonfire night I am inundated with calls and emails from animal owners, veterans and others who are concerned about the serious impact of fireworks. I was very glad to join this coalition of veterans, animal, and health charities to discuss a proportionate way forward, and to ask the Government to consult on the laws and regulations around the sale and use of fireworks.”