October 20, 2022

How are Animals Being Protected Around the World?

CALS Ambassadors Tess Vickery ’19 and Tony Gerrans ’19 shared cutting-edge animal law developments from around the world and called on attendees to take action to protect animals in their home countries.

Animal Law LLM Alums, Tess Vickery (’19, Australia) and Tony Gerrans (’19, South Africa), wanted to share cutting-edge animal law developments from around the world as our CALS Global Ambassadors. To accomplish their goal, they teamed up to create and present a three-hour virtual webinar featuring a variety of animal law experts and diverse animal protection issues.

Tess and Tony’s Global Ambassador Project

Tess and Tony worked together to research, organize, and present a seminar on recent Global Animal Law developments. The seminar, Animal Law in Practice: Case Studies & Lessons from Around the World, provides a focused and accessible opportunity to stay up-to-date with developments in animal law across the world.

Their project shared animal law developments and happenings on the ground, including legislative reform, judicial challenges, and legal education and training. The webinar also provided insight into global successes and setbacks in the field and encouraged advocates to take the lessons back to their home countries to inform domestic animal law efforts.

This free three-hour virtual seminar is available on YouTube. It provides five presentations, each of which focuses on a different area in animal law and a different geographic region of the world, with issues including captive lion breeding, live animal export, farrowing crates, and more. Learn about:

  • Developments in Animal Protection Laws in Europe–featuring speaker Martina Pluda, a professional animal advocate who has successfully run political and corporate awareness campaigns to improve the legal protection of farm, companion, and wild animals, as well as encourage plant-based and cruelty-free food options.
  • Ending Captive Lion Breeding in South Africa–featuring Rui Lopes, the Managing Director and Head of Africa Relations of Lopes Attorneys Inc., a boutique law firm in Johannesburg, South Africa.
  • How Lawyers Stopped the Use of Farrowing Crates in New Zealand–featuring our Animal Law LLM alum, Bianka Atlas, who had an integral role in a campaign to ban the use of farrowing crates in New Zealand.
  • Endangered Species Act: Protecting Animals Around the World–featuring Laura Smythe, a trial attorney for the Environmental Enforcement Section of the Environment and Natural Resources Division at the U.S Department of Justice.
  • Legal Challenges to Live Animal Expert–featuring Tony Gerrans and providing a detailed overview of the scale and nature of the slaughter committed by fishing industries, as well as the welfare harms that animals suffer during voyages at sea and when they reach their destination.

Tess & Tony’s project increased education and awareness for animal welfare and encouraged webinar attendees to take action to protect animals in their home countries. They are grateful for support to achieve their goals through our Global Ambassador Program: “It was a privilege to be a part of the Global Ambassador Program. Developing the ‘Animal Law in Practice’ seminar provided us with the opportunity to reconnect with colleagues from the Animal Law LLM program, as well as other experts in the animal law field across the globe, and bring them together to share cutting-edge developments in this space.”

Tess Vickery is the policy advisor to a Member of Parliament for the Australian Animal Justice Party. Prior to joining our Animal Law LLM program, Tess worked as a commercial and class action lawyer on many high-profile cases. During this time, she also launched an “animal law pilot program,” which was one of the first of its kind in Australia. The program allowed lawyers at her firm to undertake pro-bono work on animal law cases. Tess has published works on a range of animal law issues and has been invited to present at Australian and U.S. animal law conferences.

Tony Gerrans was born in Johannesburg and now lives in Cape Town, South Africa. He has worked in government, private business, and nonprofit sectors, primarily focused on agriculture and animal welfare. He was part of the team that researched and advised the post-apartheid Comission on Restitution of Land Rights on the legal validity of land restitution claims filed by victims of South Africa’s racially based “separate development” policy. He has also served as a legal advisor on the Cape Animal Welfare Forum, as well as a trustee of the Humane Education Trust, the South African affiliate of Compassion in World Farming.

The Center for Animal Law Studies

The Center for Animal Law Studies (CALS) was founded in 2008 with a mission to educate the next generation of animal law advocates and advance animal protection through the law. With vision and bold risk-taking, CALS has since developed into a world-renowned animal law epicenter, with the most comprehensive animal law curriculum offered anywhere. In addition, CALS is the only program that offers two advanced legal degrees in animal law (an LLM degree and a Master of Studies degree for non-lawyers, both degrees are offered in person and online) and multiple animal law clinics and experiential learning opportunities. CALS’ Alumni-in Action from more than 20 countries are advancing legal protections and making a difference for animals around the world.