Merino sheep

FOUR PAWS Joins forces to form 2-million-strong australian alliance for animals

Launch of 2-million-strong animal welfare alliance to put animals on political agenda


15 March 2022 – Australia’s leading animal protection organisations, with a combined supporter base of over two million, have joined forces in a powerful new alliance to push for an overhaul of Australia’s outdated animal welfare system.

The formation of the Australian Alliance for Animals is unprecedented in the sector with Animals Australia, Compassion in World Farming, FOUR PAWS Australia, Humane Society International Australia, World Animal Protection Australia and Voiceless, the animal protection institute, uniting as core members.

Australian Alliance for Animals

While core member groups will continue crucial campaigning on specific issues, such as ending live exports and banning puppy farming, the Alliance’s unique focus will be on tackling barriers to change, including a failing regulatory system that stymies critical reforms for animal welfare.

The Alliance was founded by three highly experienced animal advocates with a strong track record in animal welfare law, science and policy – Co-Directors Dr Jed Goodfellow and Dr Bidda Jones AM, and Head of Programs and Legal Counsel, Dr Meg Good.

“The system used to create animal welfare policy in Australia is broken. Our laws have failed to keep up with community expectations with weak regulations continuing to permit cruel practices like battery cages, sow stalls and painful procedures without pain relief. 

“Millions of Australians care about animal welfare but their views are not getting through to our political leaders. We’re going to change that. By uniting the sector, we have the potential to reach over two million people to support critical reforms. We’re going to make democracy work for animals."

Dr Jed Goodfellow, co-director, Australian Alliance for Animals

Note: Any advertisements that may appear during the viewing of this video are unrelated to FOUR PAWS. We assume no liability for this content.

“After many years trying to improve standards for animals, we recognise the entire system must be reformed before any real change can occur. That’s why we’ll be focused on shining a light on the system’s failures and promoting structural reforms to achieve systemic change for animals.

"The formation of the Alliance heralds a new era in animal welfare reform. It’s time to make the interests of animals count.” 

Dr Jed Goodfellow, co-director, Australian Alliance for Animals

The Alliance’s reform agenda includes the establishment of an independent national commission for animal welfare, the creation of ministerial portfolios for animal welfare and the introduction of a fair, consistent and transparent process for creating national animal welfare standards.

Dr Jones said there was ample evidence of the current system failing to produce acceptable outcomes and reflect current science.

“The review of national animal welfare standards for poultry has dragged on for seven long years with still no decision in sight,"  said Dr Jones.

“As a result of the excruciatingly slow pace of change, an estimated 70 million more layer hens have endured their entire lives in barren battery cages, despite community opposition to this housing system and extensive scientific evidence that it is inherently cruel."

“Draft national welfare standards for horses have been gathering dust since 2009; the review of pig standards has stalled since 2018, and it’s been an agonising 10 years since standards for abattoirs were first drafted."

“These unacceptable delays are happening across the board. The lack of progress isn’t just shockingly inefficient, it comes at a huge cost in terms of animal suffering.

“A new approach is long overdue.”

Dr Bidda Jones AM, co-director, Australian Alliance for Animals

About the Australian Alliance for Animals

The Australian Alliance for Animals is a national registered charity leading a strategic alliance of Australia’s key animal protection organisations with the aim of achieving systemic change for animals. Website:

Dr Goodfellow and Dr Jones are available for interviews:

  • Dr Jed Goodfellow leads the Alliance’s law and policy reform agenda and government relations work. He has over 20 years’ experience in animal welfare law, policy and advocacy, having previously worked in senior policy, prosecutorial and enforcement roles with the RSPCA across Australia. He completed his PhD in animal welfare regulation in 2015.
  • Dr Bidda Jones AM leads the Alliance’s strategy for animal welfare and evidence-based research. A zoologist specialising in animal behaviour and welfare, Dr Jones previously worked for RSPCA Australia for 25 years, most recently as Chief Science and Strategy Officer. In 2021, Dr Jones was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for significant services to animal welfare science and advocacy.

FOUR PAWS on Social Media

Stay up to date on this topic and on all FOUR PAWS activities on our social media channels:

Elise Burgess

Elise Burgess

Head of Communications

M: 0423 873 382

FOUR PAWS Australia
GPO Box 2845 

Main Phone: 1800 454 228

FOUR PAWS is the global animal welfare organisation for animals under direct human influence, which reveals suffering, rescues animals in need and protects them.

Founded in 1988 in Vienna by Heli Dungler and friends, the organisation advocates for a world where humans treat animals with respect, empathy and understanding. The sustainable campaigns and projects of FOUR PAWS focus on companion animals including stray dogs and cats, animals in fashion, farm animals, and wild animals – such as bears, big cats, and orangutans – kept in inappropriate conditions as well as in disaster and conflict zones.

With offices in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, France, Germany, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, the UK, the USA, and Vietnam as well as sanctuaries for rescued animals in eleven countries, FOUR PAWS provides rapid help and long-term solutions.

Share now!