CWU Calls on Scottish Government to Urgently Review Dangerous Dogs Laws

For immediate release

21st May 2018


CWU Calls on Scottish Government to Urgently Review Dangerous Dogs Laws

CWU Calls on Scottish Government to urgently review Dangerous Dogs Laws and Enforcement after savage attack leaves Tranent (East Lothian) Postwoman with serious life changing injuries. The Control of Dogs Scotland Act isn’t working according to the CWU after an East Lothian Postwoman was savaged in an unprovoked attack in Tranent last Monday by a Boxer dog which inflicted serious facial injuries. ‎The CWU has re-launched it’s ‘Bite-Back’ campaign after 2,500 Postal Workers have been attacked by dogs since the Scottish Dog Control Laws were changed in 2010.

The ‎Postwoman had just returned to her mail trolley on a Tranent street, when a dangerously out of control Boxer dog launched a ferocious attack on her, tearing open wounds on her face. She was rushed to hospital for emergency treatment by plastic surgeons and was treated with precautionary medication to avoid dangerous life threatening infection.

The Police have so far failed to seize the dangerous animal or charge the owner with a Dangerous Dog Act offence.

On 8th May the Scottish Parliament carried a motion from MSP Alex Neil to review the Control Of Dogs Scotland Act 2010. The motion received strong support from all political parties following strong CWU lobbying and briefings to MSPs.

CWU National Health and Safety Officer‎ Dave Joyce who spearheads the Union’s ‘Bite-Back’ campaign said: “There’s no time for shilly-shally by the government on Dangerous Dogs. There’s been an 80% increase in dog attack hospitalisations in Scotland. Postal Workers, children and other workers are all being attacked and injured and the situation is frankly out of control and the problem we face is the failure of the law to deal with the problem and failure of the police, procurator fiscal and courts to deal with irresponsible dog owners effectively and give it the priority it now deserves.”

Dave added: “We have set out to the Scottish Government what needs to be done to start addressing the issue and we will be meeting ministers shortly to discuss it. One big problem in Scotland is the total misapplication of the law and the enforcers who are following a ‘one free bite’ rule. You don’t let a murderer have one free homicide before prosecuting and you don’t let a dangerous driver off scot-free the first time he kills a pedestrian – only taking action the second time round. It’s ludicrous to apply such a rule with dog attacks and it gives irresponsible dog owners the green light to adopt a couldn’t care less attitude.”

He concluded: “People know more about compliance with the Smoking Ban than they do about compliance with Dangerous Dog Control Laws”.



Notes to editors:

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) is the biggest trade union in the communications industry with 190,000 members in post, telecoms, mobile and financial services companies including Royal Mail Group, Post Office, BT Group, EE, O2 and Santander.

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CWU Press Office: 020 8971 7267 / 07793 314249 /