The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Melina Bath said the Victorian Inquiry into duck hunting is stacked against recreational hunters.
The Andrews Government has established a committee of nine upper house MP’s to inquire into Victoria’s recreational native bird hunting arrangements.
Ms Bath who opposed the Inquiry said it is nothing more than a parliamentary vehicle for the Andrews Government to justify a total ban on duck hunting in Victoria.
“An Inquiry is supposed to balanced and impartial, however, with majority of the Committee members already flagging their views against duck hunting, this Inquiry is hardly going to be objective”, said Ms Bath.
“You only need to look at the comments of the political parties on the Committee to know how biased it will be.
“Along with The Nationals, law abiding hunter fear the Inquiry will be used by the Andrews Government to direct recommendations to end duck season indefinitely.”
In debating the select Committee the following MP’s said –
Minister Hon Lizzie BLANDTHORN, Labor “My views on this issue are well known. I do not need convincing, and I am certainly not for turning. My view is that I believe native waterbird hunting should be banned”.
Georgie PURCELL, Animal Justice Party – “We have faith the government will finally ban duck shooting.”
Katherine COPSEY, Australian Greens – “Duck hunting should be banned once and for all”
Ms Bath said despite the agenda of many, she will use the Inquiry to encourage Victorians to share their scientific and anecdotal evidence on the environmental, economic and social benefits of duck season.
“Duck season in Victoria is a highly regulated and sustainable activity that injects millions into our local economy,” said Ms Bath.
“From firsthand experience engaging with hunters and visiting restored wetlands, I understand how recreational hunters continue to deliver positive environmental outcomes.
“In Gippsland, Field & Game members have transformed Heart Morass from a wasteland into an internationally recognised thriving wetland.
“The Nationals will continue to stand up for evidence-based approach to policy including a sustainable hunting season.”