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Bill Esterson MP backs UK ivory surrender to protect elephants

Bill Esterson MP backs UK ivory surrender to protect elephants

Sefton Central MP Bill Esterson has lent his support to an ivory surrender

scheme launched by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) to help

protect elephants from slaughter.

Members of the public are being invited to surrender their own ivory which will

be destroyed as part of a campaign to close the UK’s ivory market and save this

iconic species from the threat of extinction.

IFAW, which has run previous successful public ivory surrenders in the UK,

believes it is vital now more than ever that the British public stands up for

elephants by helping to end consumer demand for ivory products and keep up

the pressure for a domestic ban on the ivory trade.

New polling released by IFAW reveals that the vast majority of the UK public

want to protect elephants with a UK trade ban and do not wish to purchase ivory

themselves. An overwhelming 95 per cent of respondents polled by YouGov

stated that they would not be interested in purchasing antique ivory*.

Bill Esterson said : “With elephant populations at an all-time low and the

species facing extinction due to the ivory poaching crisis which is killing at

least 20,000 elephants each year, I am very pleased to support this important

IFAW initiative which enables members of the public to make a real difference

for elephants and their future survival. I would encourage any of my

constituents who have unwanted ivory to support IFAW’s ivory surrender which

will help ensure that ivory is only valued on a live, wild elephant, where it


The legal ivory trade often provides a smokescreen for the illegal killing of

elephants and, by donating unwanted ivory, IFAW believes members of the

public can make a positive contribution to elephant protection. A small number

of ivory items will be retained for education and publicity purposes while other

donations will be immediately transferred to a secret and secure location and

ultimately destroyed by the appropriate Government agency.”

Mr Esterson and IFAW call on the UK Government to ban ivory sales in the UK

as a priority.

Mr Esterson said: “We have recently seen strong moves from China and the US

to tackle their own domestic ivory markets which is to be welcomed. As a

nation of animal lovers in the UK, and with the UK playing such a significant

role historically in the ivory trade, it is time for us to also take a stand by saying

ivory belongs to elephants and no one else. We can see there is strong political

will in the UK to make this happen, and we need action to stop the ivory trade


Anyone wishing to surrender ivory items is asked to post them to: Campaigns

Department, International Fund for Animal Welfare, 87-90 Albert Embankment,

London, SE1 7UD. For queries or large items, email or call

020 7587 6700.

*All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size

was 2,201 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 12 and 13 April 2017. The

survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are

representative of all UK adults (aged 18+).

Full polling results available on request.

About IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare)

Founded in 1969, IFAW saves animals in crisis around the world. With projects

in more than 40 countries, IFAW rescues individual animals, works to prevent

cruelty to animals and advocates for the protection of wildlife and habitats. For

more information, visit Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

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