Speak Out for Farmed Animals in Your CommunityPosted by Jennifer Molidor, ALDF Staff Writer on April 1, 2015
Want to speak out for farmed animals directly to your community? Letters to the editor are a powerful way to make your voice for heard within your larger community. These letters are one of the most widely-read sections of the newspaper. Elected officials often take notice of public opinion.
Visit ALDF’s Letter to the Editor Action Center—our personalized online resource helps you easily connect with local newspapers in your area!
For example, ALDF Executive Director Stephen Wells, wrote a letter to the editor about the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s failure to regulate slaughterhouses that appeared in a local paper.
EDITOR: As noted in Tuesday’s paper, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has refused to respond to reports of an intimate relationship between a USDA inspector and a Petaluma slaughterhouse employee (“Answers sought in Rancho closure”). Early this year, federal regulators ordered a nationwide recall of 8.7 million pounds of beef from the Rancho Feeding Corp., and they shut the facility down in February. Although Reps. Mike Thompson, D-St. Helena, and Jared Huffman, D-San Rafael, have called on the USDA to provide answers, the agency is using the cover of “pending investigation” to shroud itself in secrecy.
Unfortunately, the animal agriculture industry regularly colludes with government agencies including the USDA to hide operations from the public. Meanwhile, the understaffed USDA often fails to enforce the law, putting the public at grave risk. That’s why the Cotati-based Animal Legal Defense Fund, supported by a broad coalition of public interest groups, filed the nation’s first lawsuits against state “ag gag” laws (in Idaho and Utah) that silence whistleblowers on factory farms and slaughterhouses. The industry talks about transparency while shutting the public out at every opportunity. Taxpayers deserve some answers.
Executive Director, Animal Legal Defense Fund
If you’d like to speak out for farmed animals, here are suggested topics to consider:
- Encourage your community, workplaces, and schools to try Meatless Mondays.
- Raise awareness in your community about the dangers of ag gag.
- Encourage your legislators to pass expansions of the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act.
- Challenge notions of “humane” meat and backyard farming with crucial facts.
- Encourage lawmakers to hold food producers accountable to truth-in-advertising.
- Volunteer at a farmed animal sanctuary in your area and share your story!
- Ask your legislators to make sure agencies regulate air and water polluted by factory farms.