Here’s a piece by Rob Hepworth, a volunteer with the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation on why he is voting ‘Jessica Morden’ on June 8th.


As a Newport East constituent involved in wildlife protection for almost 40 years I’m really grateful to Jessica Morden for all the work she has done as our MP to support better treatment of animals and the environment.
Since retiring from the United Nations, I’ve been working voluntarily as a senior adviser to one of the animal charities – the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation – who specialise in protecting endangered mammals in Africa and Asia. One of their main campaigns has been to stop the slaughter of elephants to feed the global ivory trade. Jessica has spoken up passionately for elephants in a Parliamentary debate last December –
At the end of that debate Labour’s Shadow Minister gave a commitment to introduce a total ban on all ivory.
I’m really pleased to see that Labour have included a commitment to “introduce a total ban on ivory trading,” in their draft manifesto. It’s clear that at least Labour accept that we have a special duty in Britain to play our part in saving African and Asian elephants which are suffering terribly at the hands of ivory poachers, smugglers and illegal traders. The Conservatives promised to stop the ivory trade in Britain in two successive manifestos in 2010 and 2015. They have had 7 years to do it but have not delivered despite warm words from prominent former Ministers such as Lord Hague. In fact at the last major UN conference on wildlife trade last October the UK Government shamed us all by voting against proposals put forward by traditional overseas friends of Britain like Botswana and Kenya which would have given the highest category of international legal protection to elephants against the ivory poachers and traders.
Personally I hope that we now get a Government elected which will work immediately to get an EU ivory ban in place before Brexit and then make sure that the UK implements a total ban on the commercial ivory trade when all wildlife trade powers are restored to Westminster. This is not too much to ask and it is to their credit that Labour have been the first to step up to the plate in their manifesto.
I know that if Jessica Morden is elected she will again be at the forefront in making sure that the Government takes practical steps to protect elephants and other endangered species such as whales, rhinos and whales.
She is an excellent constituency MP and I would like to give her my very best personal wishes for the Election.”
Rob Hepworth
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