MP attacks shechitah in Commons debate

By Marcus Dysch, May 27, 2009

An anti-Shechitah MP has again called on the government to ban Jewish religious slaughter.

North West Leicestershire Labour MP David Taylor said the law which exempts shechitah from the practice of pre-stunning animals “cannot be allowed to continue”.

He asked Farming Minister Jane Kennedy to view a film which he said “shows the effects of such slaughter”.

“It cannot be allowed to continue and we must end those exemptions. It is cruel, unacceptable and antediluvian,” he said.

Ms Kennedy said she would watch the film “with a sinking heart”.

She said: “We have a long tradition of religious tolerance, which has led to the exemptions, but I will come to the meeting. I am aware that this is an issue of acute concern across the UK.”

In February, Mr Taylor tabled an early day motion attempting to revive a 2003 recommendation by the Farm Animal Welfare Council (FAWC) which called for pre-stunning before shechitah is performed.

Shimon Cohen, spokesman for Shechitah UK, set up to protect Jewish religious slaughter, said: “It is very sad that Mr Taylor continues to refer to religious slaughter as ‘cruel’ when he is unable to attach a single piece of evidence to support his offensive charge.”

Last updated: 2:17pm, May 27 2009