Protesters, who interfere with the transportation of livestock in Ontario, could face hefty fines.
Bill 156, also known as the Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, 2020, was passed by the Ontario government last month.
The bill applies to all farms, animal processing facilities and prescribed premises at which farm animals are kept, with some exempted from the act by regulations.
Protect farms and food supply chain
The bill intends to protect farm animals and the food supply chain, by eliminating or reducing the risks that are created when “individuals trespass on those properties or interfere with farm animals, including the risk of exposing farm animals to disease and stress as well as the risk of introducing contaminants into the food supply”.
It also aims to protect the safety of farmers, their families and persons working in or on farms, animal processing facilities and prescribed premises as well as the safety of drivers of motor vehicles transporting farm animals.
“If a person contravenes this Act by stopping, hindering, obstructing or otherwise interfering with a motor vehicle transporting farm animals or by interfering or interacting with a farm animal being transported on a motor vehicle, the driver of the motor vehicle shall not be liable for any injury, loss or damages suffered by that person unless, the driver created a danger with the deliberate intent of doing harm or damage to the person; or the injury, loss or damages were caused by actions taken by the driver with willful or reckless disregard for the presence of the person.” the Bill reads.
The bill will see a person found guilty of an offence liable for a fine of up to $15,000 (over €13,200) for a first offence and a maximum of $25,000 (approximately €22,030) for any subsequent offence.
Offenders will also have to pay if they damage property or livestock.
Main image source: Sophie Benker Facebook – Read more about the incident that occurred in Co. Tipperary last year.