June 4, 2020

This Shameful Bill Should not Pass: Part Two

Photo courtesy of the ASCPA.

In January, I wrote a blog about the Ford government’s introduction of shameful and dangerous Bill 156, the so-called Security from Trespass and Animal Safety Act.

It appeared that the government had, sensibly, backed away from this terrible law, but this week, it decided to proceed to pass this legislation on June 15 without even a reasonable opportunity to hear the voices of Ontarians. Two days of consultations cannot seriously be considered consulting the public.

While the world is facing its biggest health challenge in living memory, the Ontario government priorities are to be seriously questioned. I expect the Ontario government would focus its efforts on protecting the health of the most vulnerable populations and to focus on rebuilding our economy. Instead, they are sneaking this shameful Act through when our backs are turned.

There are no legally binding standards for the treatment of animals on farms in Ontario. Even before we were faced with the challenges of COVID-19, there were no proactive government inspections of farms to monitor animal welfare. Challenges due to the public health crisis pose serious risks to animal welfare, including an inability to maintain animal care practices, confined living conditions that are even more overcrowded than previously, inadequate feed and veterinary supplies, animals being transported greater distances to slaughter, and animals being killed through mass culling. Beyond the welfare of animals, the muzzling of witnesses could seriously undermine the safety of our food supply.

It is unconscionable and irresponsible to pass legislation that would make it illegal for an employee of a farm or a slaughterhouse to record and reveal animal cruelty at their place of work.

The protection of whistleblowers is needed now more than ever.

So what can you do about it? You can stand up for animals and let your voice be heard. Please write to your MPP to let them know that you stand against Bill 156.

Bruce Roney
President & CEO