Australia is a federation of states and territories and the Commonwealth, with three tiers of government. Under current constitutional arrangements, primary responsibility for animal welfare within Australia rests with the states and territories.
The 2012 report on AAWS progress was prepared by the Australian Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (AUSAWAC) and provided to the Federal Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and the national Animal Welfare Committee (AWC). It highlights a broad scope of activity and a very high level of in-kind contribution to this program across national and international animal welfare activities.
The AAWS aims to be comprehensive and inclusive, however it is only one body of work and one stream of investment. The Australian Government provided funding of $1.012 million to the AAWS in 2012-13, though implementation of the AAWS relies on a shared responsibility involving governments, animal welfare organisations, training and research institutions and most importantly the public at large. There are almost 140 experts and representatives directly involved in the nine AAWS working groups.
This report has two attachments. The 2012-13 AAWS Work Plan is at Attachment A, which includes the contribution of jurisdictions to the AAWS. AUSAWAC is continuing to work with AAWS stakeholders in order to capture contributions from non-government organisations and others in future reports.
The ‘Australia’s animal welfare arrangements and capacity’ report prepared by the AWC is at Attachment B, which details jurisdictional arrangements for animal welfare policy, administration, legislation and enforcement.