The WAZA 2023 Animal Welfare Goal

After consultation with WAZA regional and national zoo and aquarium association members (through meetings in August 2016 and June 2019), WAZA Council in July 2019, approved the goal that by 31 December 2023:

  1. WAZA National and Regional Associations must have an animal welfare evaluation process in place and such a process must include specific elements approved by WAZA.
  2. All WAZA institutional members must be compliant with this process.

During the 2nd WAZA Animal Welfare Evaluation Summit that took place in Barcelona, representatives from WAZA-member national and regional associations, described the seven specific elements of an Animal Welfare Evaluation Process, which are:

  1. Welfare Model
  2. Animal Welfare Standards
  3. Verification
  4. Capacity
  5. Training
  6. Disciplinary Process
  7. Complaints procedure

More information on each of the seven operational elements can be found here.

The WAZA Assessment Tool for implementation of the WAZA 2023 Animal Welfare Goal

The WAZA Associations, Membership and Ethics and Animal Welfare Committee have developed this tool to help assess compliance with the seven operational elements that the Associations’ Animal Welfare Evaluation Processes need to meet to achieve the goal.

Download the WAZA Assessment Tool here.

How will the review of the associations’ Animal Welfare Evaluation Processes work?

a) Application to the WAZA Executive Office to start the process.
b) Self-evaluation by the reviewee (i.e. the association being reviewed), using the WAZA Assessment Tool.
c) Appointment of a Reviewer association by the WAZA Executive Office.
d) Validation of the self-evaluation by the reviewer
e) Reviewer to initiate any interim follow up with the reviewee and advising the WAZA Executive Office.
f) Once the report is finalised by the reviewer, it is shared with the WAZA Executive Office, issuing a recommendation on an outcome and for processing to the next stage.
g) The final reports are shared with an expert panel for a decision on meeting or not meeting the WAZA 2023 Animal Welfare Goal.

To see the Terms of Reference of the Expert panel, please click here

Questions? Get in touch with us. 

The World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) is the global alliance of regional associations, national federations, zoos and aquariums, dedicated to the care and conservation of animals and their habitats around the world.

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