Sentience – Placing the interests of non-human animals centre stage in society

Welcome to the new website of Sentience Politics (or Sentience, for short). The term “sentience” means having the capacity to experience feelings and sensations – and, in particular, happiness and suffering. Alongside human beings, who, from a biological perspective, are classed as part of the animal world, non-human animals also possess this ability.

Our association believes that sentience should be recognised as the main criterion for the moral and political consideration of a living creature, and is calling for successive changes in the current system towards the goal of respectful coexistence of man and beast.

At a political level, Sentience currently has two popular initiatives underway that pursue this aim. The national Initiative against factory farming calls for higher animal protection standards for farm animals and the abolition of factory farming. The initiative will be debated in the winter session 2021 of the National Council.

In the canton of Basel-Stadt, in parallel to this initiative, is the campaign Primate Initiative campaign, which seeks to anchor two fundamental rights for all primates in the cantonal constitution, namely the right to life and the right to mental and physical integrity. The referendum will be held on 13 February 2022.

After seven years in its old guise, it is high time the new structure of our association and its increasing professionalism was made apparent to the outside world. Not only have our logo and website been given a makeover, but our team, too, has expanded substantially over the past twelve months.

Welcoming nine new team members in the areas of campaign work, communications, volunteer mobilisation, fundraising, research and politics. Together with our Board of Directors, Advisory Board and volunteers, the team brings issues to the political floor and shines a spotlight on the interests of non-human animals.