Government of Yukon

December 30, 2013

New Animal Health Act will help protect animal and human health

WHITEHORSE—A new Animal Health Act will come into effect on January 1, 2014, ushering in a modern, effective, legal framework for the Yukon government to respond to the full range of animal health issues and their impacts on human health.

“New threats to animal health have emerged since 1997, when the original act was put in place,” Minister of Environment Currie Dixon said. “The new Animal Health Act puts a science-based, operationally-focused set of rules in place that support rapid government response to threats such as influenza, West Nile virus or newly-recognized diseases.”

The new Animal Health Act has a broader scope, applying not only to disease but also to hazards, such as toxins. As well, it now applies to carcasses and animal products, in addition to live animals. The act clearly sets out the role of the government’s chief veterinary officer along with how and when information must be shared with affected individuals.

“Livestock owners, wildlife stakeholders and veterinarians were involved in the development of the new act, to help ensure it reflects unique Yukon circumstances while keeping pace with modernized legislation in other Canadian jurisdictions,” Minister of Energy, Mines and Resources Scott Kent said.

The Legislative Assembly unanimously approved Bill 62, the Animal Health Act on November 19.

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Key changes to the Animal Health Act:



Elaine Schiman
Cabinet Communications

Nancy Campbell
Communications, Environment

News Release #13-331