MPPs Paul Calandra and Caroline Mulroney with Ernie Hardeman, Ontario’s Minister of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs, met for a roundtable with local farmers and agribusinesses to consult and receive feedback on proposed regulations for the Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, 2020.
This legislation was introduced to address concerns about food safety, biosecurity and farm families feeling unsafe in their own homes.
“I wish to thank Minister Hardeman for meeting with our hardworking farmers to consult on the provisions to be included in the Minister’s regulation under the Act,” Calandra said.
“Our government will always stand with Ontario’s agri-food heroes who work hard everyday so that food remains on grocery store shelves and family dinner tables – especially at this challenging time,” Hardeman said. “I truly appreciate hearing what Ontario’s farmers and members of the agriculture sector have to say about the Act, and I invite the public to provide their thoughts and feedback on the proposed regulations.”
Nearly 130 municipalities passed or supported council resolutions calling on the government to strengthen protections for farm families, employees and animals. This is part of the government’s commitment to protecting the health and safety of our agri-food sector, farm animal welfare and food safety.
The public can provide input into a potential Minister’s Regulation for the Act by visiting Ontario’s Regulatory Registry until October 15, 2020 to ensure the Act is clear and easily interpreted to fulfil its intended purposes.
To address an urgent public safety concern, on September 2nd the Ontario government proclaimed a portion of the Act which prohibit stopping, hindering, obstructing or otherwise interfering with a motor vehicle transporting farm animals.
The legislation respects rights of people to participate in legal protests that take place in public spaces, provided such protests do not have the potential to cause harm. Careful work was put into crafting this Act to balance the rights of farmers and their farm operations as well as the rights for people to participate in lawful protests on public property.
Photo: MPPs Paul Calandra and Ernie Hardeman at the 2019 Markham Fair.