MINISTER for Primary Industries Katrina Hodgkinson will be asked to make a public apology after likening animal liberationists to terrorists.
Yesterday at the NSW Farmers Association general meeting Ms Hodgkinson came out swinging when talking about animal rights groups which covertly film piggeries to monitor the welfare of animals.
It didn’t take long for her comments to reach the ears of welfare organisations. Her comments have been slammed as “baseless, outrageous and highly offensive”.
During her address Ms Hodgkinson pointed the finger at Animals Australia.
“We have to win the fight on this one and we have to keep putting it up to city people that may not necessarily understand our farming practices and how important they are, that they can not support these groups such as Animals Australia and can not support what they’re doing,” she said.
“These people are vandals. These people are akin to terrorists.”
The comment may end up costing her, with Animals Australia immediately calling for her to retract her comment and issue a public apology.
“The minister’s comments are baseless, outrageous and highly offensive not just to Animals Australia but to the thousands of Australians who care about animals and want to see them protected from cruelty,” the organisation’s communications director Lisa Chalk said.
“Minister Hodgkinson will be receiving a letter from our legal counsel demanding a public retraction and apology.
“It is of deep concern that such reckless comments have come from a senior minister in the NSW government and one who is charged with overseeing the welfare of animals in that state.”