Bill 156, named the Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, is an Ontario bill that was introduced to protect farm animals, the food supply, farmers and others involved in food production and processing from risks when uninvited trespassers enter places where farm animals are kept or unauthorized interactions with farm animals.
These risks include exposing farm animals to disease and causing undue stress and could potentially introduce contaminants into the food supply. It will protect farmers, their families and employees from harassment, theft and abuse from intruders on their property. It also protects truck drivers from stress and harassment while transporting animals.
Bill 156 strikes an important balance. It respects the right to peaceful public protest, while giving the justice system the tools it needs to help protect farms, farmers, livestock, abattoirs and meat processors, and the food supply from trespassing and harassment.
Everyone has the right to a safe home and workplace - for farmers, they are often the same location. The Bill does not take away anyone’s right to protest or express their individual beliefs – peaceful protests on public property would be respected under the bill.
Some sections of the Bill related to transport came into effect on September 2. This allows drivers to enter processing facilities without being stopped and facing the many dangers of having people in close contact with the truck.
For more information about the Bill, visit www.aboutbill156.com.