updated on 08 March 2019
A new law firm has been launched entirely dedicated to the protection of animal rights. Advocates for Animals (AFA), which is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, plans to work for charities and non-governmental organisations and is already supported by the legal charity, the UK Centre of Animal Law.
The firm – believed to be the first of its kind – has been set up by partners David Thomas and Edie Bowles, who are experienced in the field and consultants to animal rights organisations. Thomas is a part-time judge and was the legal officer of the Child Poverty Action Group, while Bowles specialises in animal protection law and currently advises organisations such as Cruelty Free International and the Vegan Society.
AFA says that the firm “is committed to the creative use of the law – alongside investigations, science, lobbying, social and traditional media – to make a huge difference to the lives of animals.”
Speaking to Legal Futures, Thomas explained that although animal rights law is a very niche practice, there is a huge body of law – both international and domestic – that relates to animal protection. Bowles commented: “I am honoured to be part of a movement, both nationally and internationally, that works towards giving animals the protection they deserve in law. It is crucial that the interests of animals are taken seriously.”