Wild Justice has been set up to fight for wildlife. Threatened species can’t take legal cases in their own names but, with your help, we will stand up for wildlife using the legal system and seeking changes to existing laws.
Wild Justice is new – we launched in February 2019 – but we have a long list of projects which we will take forward – we will be launching the first one very soon. Sign up to our newsletter, below, so that we can keep you informed.
We will be taking court cases to benefit threatened wildlife. Our first legal challenge is already in progress and we’ll soon be able to tell you all about it.
Wild Justice has three directors and no other staff. None of us takes a salary or payment from the organisation – but we will claim our travel expenses for Wild Justice work. We are three friends who have worked together on campaigns and projects but now we want to do something bigger together and that’s why Wild Justice exists. We’ve each got our separate jobs and activities outside Wild Justice, we don’t agree about everything, but we want to work together to make a difference for wildlife. This is who we are:
Dr Mark Avery is an author, blogger and environmental campaigner. Mark worked for the RSPB for 25 years and was the RSPB’s Conservation Director for nearly 13 years. In 2016 he launched a petition calling for a ban on driven grouse shooting which amassed 123,077 signatures and was debated in the Westminster Parliament. In 2018, he mounted two legal challenges to Natural England decisions – one of which he won and the other is waiting judgment after three days of hearing in the High Court.
Mark Avery said ‘Wild Justice will take on public bodies to get a better deal for wildlife. It’s a shame that we have to do this but we have little confidence that statutory bodies are fulfilling their functions properly. We aim to hold their feet to the fire in court. I’m reminded of what the great American environmental campaigner, Ansel Adams said ‘It is horrifying that we have to fight our own government to save the environment.’.
Chris Packham is a naturalist, nature photographer, television presenter and author. He was awarded a CBE for services to nature conservation in the last New Year Honours List.
Chris Packham said ‘Wild. Justice. Because the wild needs justice more than ever before. The pressures wrought upon our wildlife have reached a crisis point and this is an essential response. The message is clear . . . if you are breaking the law, if the law is weak, if the law is flawed – we are coming for you. Peacefully, democratically and legally. Our simple premise is to work with the laws we’ve got to seek real justice for our wildlife, to reform, refine or renew those laws we have to ensure that justice can be properly realised. Our wildlife has been abused, has been suffering, exploited or destroyed by criminals for too long. Well, no longer. Wild Justice will at last be the voice of those victims and it will be heard . . . and justice will be served.‘.
Ruth Tingay said ‘I know many people who despair about what’s happening to our wildlife but who also feel powerless to help, typically because access to justice can be prohibitively expensive and a daunting arena. Wild Justice provides an opportunity for ordinary citizens to fight back on behalf of wildlife, collectively helping us to challenge poor decisions or flawed policies that threaten to harm our wildlife. With so many potential cases, the difficulty for us will be to decide which ones to take on first.’.
We have been talking to a wide range of lawyers in England and Scotland, and to a range of important wildlife and environmental non-government organisations and individuals. We are sure that we can fill a gap in current activities and make a real difference.
We will need your help. Legal cases are expensive even though we have found a great team of lawyers who will help us at very low fees.
Wild Justice is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee. We decided not to set up a charity because that would limit some activities, eg campaigning against government policies, that we may want to carry out. A not-for-profit company is one where the directors don’t benefit from the profits of the company and money raised is spent on the aims (called the ‘objects’) of the company.
The objects of Wild Justice are:
Over the next few weeks and months we will be starting projects and building this website so that it gives you more information on what we are doing.