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Ont. supports farm animal transporters

Ont. supports farm animal transporters

It will soon be an offence to stop or obstruct a vehicle carrying livestock

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

The Ontario government is making it a punishable offence to impede vehicles carrying farm animals.

As of Sept. 2, individuals who “stop, hinder, obstruct or otherwise interfere with a motor vehicle transporting farm animals” can be fined under Bill 156, the Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act.

For a first offence, a person can receive a fine of up to $15,000. A subsequent infraction can result in fines up to $25,000.

This regulation helps ensure livestock transporters and farmers are operating in safe environments, said Ernie Hardeman, Ontario's ag minister.

In addition, Regulation 950 under the Provincial Offences Act was changed to allow police officers to issue tickets to anyone who disrupts the transport of livestock.

"This will provide (police) with the ability to actually cause something to happen right there on the scene, just like someone getting stopped for a traffic violation," Minister Hardeman said.

The fine amounts on tickets would be set by the chief justice of the Ontario Court of Justice, the minister added.

Minister Hardeman introduced Bill 156 into the Ontario legislature in December 2019.

Since then, nearly 130 municipalities, including Chatham-Kent, Prince Edward County and Wellington North, have supported the bill and the protections it provides for Ontario farm families.

The support from Ontario communities "is what drove (Bill 156) when we started," he said. "With the help of all these people, we created the bill we have. It's a good balance between protecting public safety and protecting the public's rights to express their freedom of speech and their feelings any way they want as long as they do it on public property."

Ontarians still have time to provide input on Bill 156.

The provincial government’s public consultation period remains open until Oct. 15.

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Comments (2)

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The OPP and local police need to be educated as well. Its one thing to have these laws put in place, its another to have local law "enforcement" enforce them. There is no reason why farmers should have to accept that these people can come on their property, where their children and families are, areas that are bio secure, and not be penalized for their actions. Trespassing laws need to have significant teeth, that need to be utilized, to protect the farmers.
heather |Sep 3 2020 12:58PM
My family supports Bill 156. No one should be allowed to upset the animals and truck drivers by swarming trucks on roadways or private property. Furthermore, no one should be allowed to risk their own safety by jumping out in front of moving trucks or into their blind spot.
John |Sep 3 2020 6:59AM