Congress admits for consideration the People's Legislative Initiative to repeal the law protecting the cultural heritage of bullfighting

The promoting organizations will have nine months to gather the 500,000 signatures necessary to initiate its debate in Congress.

13 febrero 2024
Madrid, España.

The Congress has admitted for consideration the People's Legislative Initiative (PLI) "Not My Culture" which aims to eliminate the legal protection currently afforded to bullfighting in Spain. This notification was conveyed by the Central Electoral Board to the Promoting Commission of this proposal.

Ten years have passed since bullfighting was declared Cultural Heritage, and yet the number of bullfights and other festivities has only decreased. According to the Ministry of Culture's Cultural Statistics Yearbook, the number of bullfighting events in arenas has halved in 10 years, dropping from 2,684 in 2009 to 1,425 in 2019, despite bullfighting being declared cultural heritage in 2013.

However, we denounce that the current state legislation undermines the autonomy and municipal powers since, in practice, it deprives municipalities and autonomous communities of the initiative in regulating manifestations of their own cultural heritage.

"We are very excited. This is the first step to open a transcendent social and political debate for a country model that allows progress in animal protection, restoring the freedom to legislate to municipalities and regional governments. Now the challenge is to obtain the 500,000 signatures required for the law to reach Congress and be debated", says David Calvo, spokesperson for the Promoting Commission of the PLI "Not My Culture". "The next steps will be to achieve the support of more organizations, start collecting signatures, and bring our measures to public officials", he adds.

This PLI was registered in the Congress of Deputies on January 4, 2024. Once registered, the Congress Board had 15 days to decide on its admission for consideration or not. This is the first filter, and where there are more possibilities for a PLI not to advance: of the 107 PLIs presented from 1983 to 2019, the Congress Board has rejected 45, 42%.

Starting in the coming weeks, the promoting entities will have a period of nine months - extendable for another three - to collect 500,000 signatures. These signatures will be collected only on paper, on official forms provided by the Promoting Commission. If the necessary signatures are obtained, the parliamentary processing of the Popular Legislative Initiative would begin.

We are confident that we will obtain the required signatures, as bullfighting generates increasing rejection among the Spanish population.

The population survey (16,000 people interviewed) offered by the Ministry of Culture, for the period 2018-2019, on the habits and cultural practices of Spaniards, indicated the low interest of citizens in bullfighting events. Only 8% attended any bullfighting event, and only 5.8% attended an event in the arena; of the latter, 19.6% did so for free and 5% with a discount.

In this regard, the latest surveys reflect that over 50% of the Spanish population is in favor of banning or limiting bullfighting (SocioMétrica survey for EL ESPAÑOL, 2019), or that nearly 8 out of 10 people are against the use of animals in bullfighting (Study by the BBVA Foundation 'Vision and Attitudes towards Animals in Spanish Society' in 2022).

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