Manitoba and British Columbia want to follow Alberta’s lead
By Diego Flammini
Farm groups and governments in parts of Western Canada are looking at ways to deter protestors from illegally entering farm properties.
At its fall advisory council meeting in Brandon, Man., on Oct. 25, Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP) committed to working with the Manitoba government to “enhance and fully enforce laws around intimidation, trespass, break and enter, and mischief towards farmers and lay charges to the fullest extent against those that break the law.”
KAP’s resolution follows in the wake of Alberta’s decision to amend legislation to increase penalties for people who trespass on a private farm.
A B.C. politician is also taking steps to stop illegal farm protests.
Laurie Throness, the Liberal MLA for Chilliwack-Kent, introduced the Trespass Amendment Act 2019 in the provincial legislature on Oct. 29.
If passed, the bill would “add specific and targeted penalties against those who trespass on farms,” he said in the legislature.
Recent situations motivated Throness to introduce the legislation.
In March, Julaine Treur, who runs Creekside Dairy in Agassiz, B.C. with her husband Johannes, posted a message on the farm’s Facebook page outlining some of the hurtful comments she’s received from activists.
Then, in April,
Protesting on public around 60 animal activists entered Excelsior Hog Farm in Abbotsford, B.C.property is one thing but, when individuals enter a private property, it becomes a more serious offense.
“It’s fine for protestors to demonstrate about anything they want, but let them do so on public property,” Throness said, The Progress reported. “It’s not alright to break the law, take away the rights of our farmers and threaten the safety of their families and livestock while making their point.”
Farms.com has reached out to KAP and British Columbia farm groups for comment.