HERD ABOUT IT?
by Ana Grarian
A bill in the New York State Assembly has been referred to the Committee on Agriculture that would require certain categories of livestock be housed in a way that allows for freedom of movement. The bill allows for exceptions for veterinary treatment, transportation, livestock shows etc. Passage of this bill would mean that livestock that currently lives in exceptionally confined or crowded environments, would be allowed the freedom to stretch, turn around and lay down comfortably. Is that too much to ask?
Though not addressed in the bill, crowded confinement facilities create hazards to human health as well as to the health of the livestock confined
The Pew Commission on Industrial Farm Animal Production released a report in 2008 entitled Putting Meat on the Table: Industrial Farm Animal Production in America that recommended a phase out of all intensive confinement systems within ten years, noting beyond the cruelty to animals these operations inflict, the public health issues resulting from such confinement operations:
one of the most serious unintended consequences of industrial food animal production (ifap) is the growing public health threat of these types of facilities. In addition to the contribution of ifap to the major threat of antimicrobial resistance (Smith et al., 2002; Smith et al., 2007), ifap facilities can be harmful to workers, neighbors, and even those living far from the facilities through air and water pollution, and via the spread of disease. Workers in and neighbors of ifap facilities experience high levels of respiratory problems, including asthma (Donham and Gustafson, 1982; Donham et al., 1989; Donham et al., 1995; Donham et al., 1985 a; Donham et al., 2007; Merchantetal.,2005; Mirabellietal.,2006a; Mirabellietal.,2006 b; Sigurdarson and Kline, 2006; Thu, 2002). In addition, workers can serve as a bridging population, transmitting animal-borne diseases to a wider population (Myers et al., 2006; Saenz et al., 2006). A lack of appropriate treatment of enormous amounts of waste may result in contamination of nearby waters with harmful levels of nutrients and toxins, as well as bacteria, fungi, and viruses (Nolan and Hitt, 2006; Peak et al., 2007), all of which can affect the health of people both near and far from ifap facilities.
If you care about the well being of animals, and the health of our people and our environment please contact the members of the Committee on Agricuture and ask them to pass this bill. The link below lists the committee members and their email contact info. Or contact your own Assembly person and request their help in passing this important measure to ease the conditions experienced by livestock.
The text of the bill follows……
S T A T E O F N E W Y O R K
2009-2010 Regular Sessions
I N A S S E M B L Y
May 6, 2009
Introduced by M. of A. ROSENTHAL, CASTRO, PAULIN, MAISEL, McENENY, KELL-
NER, KAVANAGH, MILLMAN, EDDINGTON, ROBINSON, GOTTFRIED — Multi-Spon-
sored by — M. of A. GLICK, LATIMER, TITUS — read once and referred
to the Committee on Agriculture
AN ACT to amend the agriculture and markets law, in relation to the
confinement of animals for food producing purposes
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
1 Section 1. The agriculture and markets law is amended by adding a new
2 section 353-e to read as follows:
3 S 353-E. CONFINEMENT OF ANIMALS FOR FOOD PRODUCING PURPOSES. 1. FOR
4 PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, THE FOLLOWING TERMS SHALL HAVE THE FOLLOWING
6 (A) “CALF RAISED FOR VEAL” MEANS ANY CALF OF THE BOVINE SPECIES KEPT
7 FOR THE PURPOSE OF PRODUCING THE FOOD PRODUCT DESCRIBED AS VEAL.
8 (B) “COVERED ANIMALS” MEANS ANY PIG DURING PREGNANCY, CALF RAISED FOR
9 VEAL, OR EGG-LAYING HEN WHO IS KEPT ON A FARM.
10 (C) “EGG-LAYING HEN” MEANS ANY FEMALE DOMESTICATED CHICKEN, TURKEY,
11 DUCK, GOOSE, OR GUINEA FOWL KEPT FOR THE PURPOSE OF EGG PRODUCTION.
12 (D) “ENCLOSURE” MEANS ANY CAGE, CRATE, OR OTHER STRUCTURE (INCLUDING
13 WHAT IS COMMONLY DESCRIBED AS A “GESTATION CRATE” FOR PIGS, A “VEAL
14 CRATE” FOR CALVES, OR A “BATTERY CAGE” FOR EGG-LAYING HENS) USED TO
15 CONFINE A COVERED ANIMAL.
16 (E) “FARM” MEANS THE LAND, BUILDING, SUPPORT FACILITIES, AND OTHER
17 EQUIPMENT THAT ARE WHOLLY OR PARTIALLY USED FOR THE COMMERCIAL
18 PRODUCTION OF ANIMALS OR ANIMAL PRODUCTS USED FOR FOOD OR FIBER, AND
19 DOES NOT INCLUDE LIVE ANIMAL MARKETS.
20 (F) “FULLY EXTENDING ITS LIMBS” MEANS FULLY EXTENDING ALL LIMBS WITH-
21 OUT TOUCHING THE SIDE OF AN ENCLOSURE, INCLUDING, IN THE CASE OF
22 EGG-LAYING HENS, FULLY SPREADING BOTH WINGS WITHOUT TOUCHING THE SIDE OF
23 AN ENCLOSURE OR OTHER EGG-LAYING HENS.
EXPLANATION–Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
[ ] is old law to be omitted.
A. 8163 2
1 (G) “PERSON” MEANS ANY INDIVIDUAL, CORPORATION, PARTNERSHIP, ASSOCI-
2 ATION, OR OTHER LEGAL ENTITY.
3 (H) “PIG DURING PREGNANCY” MEANS ANY PREGNANT PIG OF THE PORCINE
4 SPECIES KEPT FOR THE PRIMARY PURPOSE OF BREEDING.
5 (I) “TURNING AROUND FREELY” MEANS TURNING IN A COMPLETE CIRCLE WITHOUT
6 ANY IMPEDIMENT, INCLUDING A TETHER, AND WITHOUT TOUCHING THE SIDE OF AN
8 2. IT SHALL BE UNLAWFUL FOR ANY PERSON TO TETHER OR CONFINE ANY
9 COVERED ANIMAL, AS DEFINED IN SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS SECTION, ON A FARM
10 FOR ALL OR THE MAJORITY OF ANY DAY, IN A MANNER THAT PREVENTS SUCH
11 ANIMAL FROM LYING DOWN, STANDING UP AND FULLY EXTENDING ITS LIMBS AND
12 TURNING AROUND FREELY.
13 3. THIS SECTION SHALL NOT APPLY DURING THE FOLLOWING LAWFULLY
14 PERFORMED ACTIVITIES:
15 (A) TRANSPORTATION,
16 (B) EXHIBITIONS AT RODEOS, FAIRS, YOUTH PROGRAMS, AND SIMILAR EXHIBI-
18 (C) SLAUGHTERING PROCESS,
19 (D) SCIENTIFIC OR AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH,
20 (E) EXAMINATION, TESTING, INDIVIDUAL TREATMENT OR OPERATION FOR VETER-
21 INARY PURPOSES,
22 (F) TO A PIG DURING THE SEVEN-DAY PERIOD PRIOR TO THE PIG’S EXPECTED
23 DATE OF GIVING BIRTH.
24 4. A VIOLATION OF THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION IS A CLASS A MISDE-
25 MEANOR PUNISHABLE BY IMPRISONMENT FOR A PERIOD NOT TO EXCEED ONE YEAR,
26 OR BY A FINE NOT TO EXCEED ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS, OR BY BOTH SUCH FINE
27 AND IMPRISONMENT.
28 5. NOTHING CONTAINED IN THIS SECTION SHALL PREVENT ANY TOWN, CITY,
29 VILLAGE OR COUNTY IN NEW YORK STATE FROM ENACTING A LOCAL LAW OR ORDI-
30 NANCE TO PROVIDE FOR THE HUMANE TREATMENT OF AND PREVENTION OF CRUELTY
31 TO FARM ANIMALS, PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT NO SUCH LAW SHALL CONFLICT WITH
32 THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION.
33 6. NOTHING CONTAINED IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE CONSTRUED TO REDUCE THE
34 PROTECTION AFFORDED TO FARM ANIMALS UNDER ANY OTHER SECTION OF THIS
35 ARTICLE OR ANY OTHER LAW OR REGULATION. NOTHING IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE
36 CONSTRUED TO LIMIT OR RESTRICT AGENTS OR OFFICERS OF SOCIETIES FOR THE
37 PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS OR THE POLICE FROM ENFORCING THE OTHER
38 PROVISIONS OF THIS ARTICLE OR ANY OTHER LAW OR REGULATION RELATING TO
39 THE HUMANE TREATMENT OF OR CRUELTY TO ANIMALS.
40 7. THIS SECTION SHALL BE ENFORCED BY THE DEPARTMENT, AND ANY AGENT AND
41 OFFICER OF ANY DULY INCORPORATED SOCIETY FOR THE PREVENTION OF CRUELTY
42 TO ANIMALS MAY ISSUE AN APPEARANCE TICKET PURSUANT TO SECTION 150.20 OF
43 THE CRIMINAL PROCEDURE LAW, SUMMONS OR ARREST, AND BRING BEFORE A COURT
44 OR MAGISTRATE HAVING JURISDICTION, ANY PERSON OFFENDING AGAINST ANY OF
45 THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION.
46 S 2. This act shall take effect January 1, 2015.
Amazing how the general public; perhaps intentionally so, remains ignorant of this and how the Right can continually frame it as bed wetters who are too concerned with animals and nothing else.
I think their are several reasons for this. These animals are kept in large closed buildings. When you drive past them you might notice the smell (ok you will notice the smell) but you can’t SEE how they are being treated. Even those of us who are/were farmers often don’t see what it’s like inside these barns.
Not to mention they are in small towns where most people don’t even go. And they are increasingly using immigrant labor, people who are reticent to speak up.
The public only sees the “Happy Cows”, or the cartoon pig on a cartoon farm.