A deal struck between The Humane Society of the United States, Ohioans for Humane Farms, Ohio agriculture leaders and Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland will lead to major animal welfare improvements in Ohio on a raft of issues, reforming industry practices and improving prospects for adoption of critical legislation in other areas. The agreement puts a hold on a planned factory farming initiative on the fall ballot, said the Humane Society of the United States today.
Once the animal-farming industries became aware that animal advocates from all over the United States had descended upon Ohio and gathered enough signatures to put an initiative on the ballot, animal agriculture finally agreed to come to the table to discuss meaningful reforms. Just hours before over 500,000 signatures were slated to be filed, a major animal protection agreement was reached – preventing costly and contentious campaigning. 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.
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