This week one of the most extreme “ag-gag” laws we have ever seen reared its head in Ontario, Canada. Ag-gag laws are designed to stop whistleblowers from exposing animal abuse at factory farms. Under Ontario Bill 156, farmers are allowed to use force to arrest a whistleblower without any warrant or evidence. Whistleblowers also face a $15,000 fine for a first offense.
Animal suffering worldwide would be so much worse if not for whistleblowers who expose the abuse that goes on in industrial agricultural facilities. Mercy For Animals has released many successful exposés conducted in several Canadian provinces. One of these exposés, in Chilliwack, British Columbia, led to 38 charges against a Fraser Valley farm, a chicken-catching company, the company’s owner, and others.
These charges may never have been filed if not for Mercy For Animals’ whistleblower, whose footage shows chickens having their limbs torn off and being kicked, stomped on, and sexually abused.
An exposé into Canada’s largest dairy factory farm revealed workers using chains and tractors to lift sick and injured cows by their necks, animals suffering from open wounds, and cows beaten with metal pipes. A total of 20 animal cruelty charges followed. The company pleaded guilty to three counts of animal cruelty, and one of its owners, Wesley Kooyman, pleaded guilty to one.
Both were sentenced to the maximum monetary penalty allowable by law—a fine of $75,000 per count. Kooyman was also prohibited from owning animals and having any control over the factory farm for one year.
The sole purpose of ag-gag laws is to protect animal abusers. Alberta just passed a similar ag-gag law at lightning speed, and we are fighting hard to prevent the same from happening in Ontario.
Farmed animals need you to make your voice heard! Ontario citizens, please let your member of provincial parliament know that you won’t support policies that shield animal abusers! Take action today by telling Ontario to stop criminalizing compassion.