Vegans: We are there to bear witness
IN RECENT weeks the Rural Weekly has reported on several incidents where vegan activists have stopped trucks as they drove livestock towards abattoirs.
This week, we hear from the activists themselves as they explain why they think this is the best strategy to get their message across.
FORMING a blockade of signs that read ‘stop killing animals’ metres from the front grill of a B-double truck, animal activists stopped a truck full of cattle from entering a meatworks.
Five members of the Brisbane Animal Save group blocked off the front of JBS Meatworks at Dinmore, while others rushed to the side of the truck with selfie-sticks to ‘be with the animals’.
It was the fourth time the group, which is part of Animal Liberation Queensland, had held ‘vigils’ at the site since August and organiser Amanda Holly said the intention was not actually to stop the animals from being killed.
Ms Holly said the group went to the site to “spend a few moments with the animals”.
“What we were doing is something that we have done many times at JBS and other abattoirs and slaughterhouses in Brisbane and regional Queensland,” Ms Holly said.
“It was a vigil, not so much a protest but a peaceful vigil.
“We were there to bear witness to the animals that were arriving outside the slaughterhouses and spend a few moments with them.
“We take photos and get footage that we share online and encourage people to see the animal and not just the product and make kinder choices with what they eat.”
She said the group does not stop the trucks for longer than two minutes at a time.
“We have had protests as well where we stand outside places where violence towards animals is happening and we hold signs where a vigil is a lot more peaceful and about the animals,” Ms Holly said.
“The Save Movement is that if you see suffering, don’t turn away from it but come closer and try to help. That’s where we get closer to the animals and stop the trucks – not for very long, a maximum of two minutes. It’s more about bearing witness, coming closer and being with the animals.
“We’re non-violent and peaceful. We’re realistic – we’re not going to stop the truck from going in.
“We’d love to be able to save those animals but the fact is we can’t. What we’re trying to do is get their faces out there and tell those animals’ stories.”
We were there to bear witness to the animals that were arriving outside the slaughter houses... — Amanda Holly
PROTEST: Members of the Brisbane Animal Save group stopped a truck at JBS at Dinmore.
Members of the Brisbane Animal Save group stopped a truck at JBS at Dinmore.