Thursday, July 1, 2010

Farm Sanctuary Issues Statement on Landmark Animal Welfare Agreement

Watkins Glen, N.Y. – June 30, 2010 –— Today Ohioans for Humane Farms reached an agreement with agriculture interests brokered by the Governor’s office to adopt several measures to protect farm animals. Farm Sanctuary, the nation’s leading farm animal protection organization, has been on the ground in Ohio with the Humane Society of the United States, other humane groups and tireless volunteers working to gather signatures for a ballot initiative to stop cruel factory farming practices in the state.

This agreement includes several reforms that outlaw and phase out cruel practices in Ohio, a state known to have some of the weakest anti-cruelty laws in the nation and no meaningful protections for farm animals. The agreement includes the following measures for farm animals:

A ban on veal crates, to be phased out within six years.

A ban on new gestation crates in the state after December 31, 2010. Existing facilities are grandfathered, but must cease use of these crates within 15 years.

A permanent moratorium on permits for new battery cage facilities in place immediately.

A ban on the transport of downed cows and calves for slaughter.

A ban on strangulation and other forms of on farm killing that are not included in euthanasia standards as outlined by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Enactment of legislation establishing felony-level penalties for cock fighters.

“These reforms represent important progress for farm animals and other animals in Ohio, and we're grateful to all our volunteers in the state who worked so hard to make this happen,” stated Farm Sanctuary President and Co-Founder Gene Baur. “With each step forward, the momentum grows. And as progress is made, the days of factory farming are numbered.”

This agreement was reached on the same day Ohioans for Humane Farms would have delivered more than 500,000 signatures to the Secretary of State. The group gathered enough signatures to put an anti-factory farming measure before Ohio voters in November.

Ohioans for Humane Farms has been supported by several organizations including the Humane Society of the United States, Farm Sanctuary, Ohio SPCA, Toledo Area Humane Society, Geauga Humane Society, Ohio League of Humane Voters, ASPCA, Mercy for Animals, Center for Food Safety, United Farm Workers, Consumer Federation of America, Center for Science in the Public Interest, and many others.

About Farm Sanctuary

Farm Sanctuary is the nation's leading farm animal protection organization. Since incorporating in 1986, Farm Sanctuary has worked to expose and stop cruel practices of the "food animal" industry through research and investigations, legal and institutional reforms, public awareness projects, youth education, and direct rescue and refuge efforts. Farm Sanctuary shelters in Watkins Glen, N.Y., and Orland, Calif., provide lifelong care for hundreds of rescued animals, who have become ambassadors for farm animals everywhere by educating visitors about the realities of factory farming. Additional information can be found at or by calling 607-583-2225.

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