Animals’ legal rights are on the agenda at UK Animal Law Conference, co-hosted by BCU

Dr Iyan Offor profile photo

“The time to create a better legal future for animals that gives them the protection they so desperately need is now,” says Birmingham City University (BCU) animal law expert ahead of the fourth annual UK Animal Law Conference, taking place at BCU on 29-30 May 2024.

Business, Law and Social Sciences

Birmingham City University

Dr Iyan Offor, Senior Lecturer in Law at BCU, said: “We’re thrilled to host the UK Animal Law Conference, led by the UK Centre for Animal Law, and hope to become its home in the future.”

Birmingham will be the nation’s centre for lawyers, academics, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and students working toward full protection for animals in UK and international law to come together and share updates on law, policy, research, and education.

“By connecting people who care about animals and the environment, we can spark ideas and create new ways of working together,” added Dr Offor, who leads the Animals, Nature, and Society research stream within BCU’s Centre for Human Rights.

“It’s also a great opportunity to bridge gaps in knowledge through network-building across disciplines, to enhance the impact of work toward full protection for animals in law.

“Just a few weeks ago, we saw a 62-year-old man sentenced in Birmingham Magistrates' Court following an infamous attack by an XL bully dog in Small Heath last year. The attack was a major factor in the banning of the breed. In my opinion, such bans fail to tackle underlying causes of dog bite fatalities and serious injury and tend to lead to negative impacts on animal welfare.

“This highlights the pressing need for this conference and better protection for animals in law.”

The conference will explore issues in animal law and how this interacts with environmental law and international trade law. Issues of ethics, policy, and education will also be discussed.

During the two-day event, conference guests will hear from inspirational speakers, including keynotes Philip Lymbury, Global Chief Executive of Compassion in World Farming, Pamela Frasch, Professor of Law and Founder of the Center for Animal Law Studies (Lewis and Clark Law School), and Karen Bradshaw, Professor of Law and Author of Wildlife as Property Owners, amongst other big industry names.

BCU animal law experts will also present, including Sam Hazle, PhD researcher in animal law, Carley Lightfoot, Law Lecturer and PhD candidate, and Iyan Offor, Senior Lecturer in Law.

A conference dinner at one of Birmingham’s hottest plant-based venues, BA-HA Vegan, is a chance to mingle and create connections for future research and professional projects.

Tickets are available to book via Eventbrite, with discounted rates available.

The conference is held in partnership with BCU’s Animals, Nature, and Society Research Stream, a community of academics and postgraduate researchers driving the consideration of animals and nature in our legal and other social systems.

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