Re-Evaluation of Animal Protection by the Finnish Animal Rights Lawyers Society

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The recognition of animals as sentient beings in the Treaty on theFunctioning of the European Union gave rise to expectations as to a trueconcern and care for animal welfare and a balance of human-animal interests. However,both the EU -legislation and Finnish animal protection legislation are based onan animal welfare paradigm, that animals have a weak legal status compared tohumans, which makes it impossible to de facto balance human and animal needsand interests in an effective manner from an animal perspective. The weak legalstatus of animals in the hierarchy of norms in the Finnish legal system contributesto the continuation of the oppression and exploitation of animals. The FinnishAnimal Rights Lawyers Society have therefore made a proposal to strengthenanimals’ legal status by including animals in the Finnish Constitution, therebysafeguarding animals’ certain fundamental rights. Furthermore, this proposalprovides tools for balancing human-animal interests. This article focuses onthe re-evaluation of animal protection from an animal and constitutional pointof view.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123–142
JournalSociety Register
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


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