Proposed constitutional amendment moves closer to November ballot

COLUMBUS — The signature collecting can begin.
That is not the news many farmers across Ohio want to hear.

Approval

The ballot board of the Ohio Secretary of State’s office approved the proposed constitutional initiative Feb. 16 by the Ohioans for Humane Farms, which is a combination of the Humane Society of the United States and Farm Sanctuary.
The initiative now moves on to the Ohio Attorney General’s office where it will certified so the group can begin collecting signatures.

Signatures

The group will need a total of 402,275 signatures of registered voters in Ohio, according to the Ohio Secretary of State’s office.
The group will need 10 percent of the total number that voted in the last governor’s election. The signatures will have to be from at least 44 of the 88 counties. In addition, the petition must include 5 percent of the total vote cast for the governor in that county during the last gubernatorial election. The petitions will have to be completed and back to the secretary of state 125 days prior to the November election.
The petition to place the amendment on the ballot was filed Jan. 27 and included the signatures from Ohio voters in 48 counties in support of placing an anti-cruelty measure on the November ballot.
The measure proposed by the Ohioans for Humane Farms would ask voters to require the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board to adopt certain minimum standards.
The petition language said the board would have six years to implement these minimum standards, claiming it allows producers time to transition to what is being described as more humane systems.

Minimum standards

The initiative would ask voters to require the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board to adopt certain minimum standards, including:
• End confinement for veal calves, breeding pigs and chickens in what has been described by the Humane Society of the United States as “tiny cages.”
• Stop “downer cows” or animals too sick or injured to stand or walk on their own from entering the human food chain.
• Establish regulations for the euthanasia of sick and injured animals.

About the Author

Kristy Foster Seachrist lives in Columbiana County raising sheep and horses. She earned her degree from Youngstown State University and has worked in both print and broadcast journalism. You can follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/fosterk96. More Stories by Kristy Foster Seachrist

2 Comments

  1. mary gibson says:

    One would have to question why with the livestock industry (Farm Bureau) having been in the business of raising animals for the past fifty years, these measures were not always a part of their program?

    The issues became more prevalent with the industrialization of the livestock industry the lack of enforcement of regulations to prevent neighbors of industrial farms from experiencing harmful effects of these farms.

    I know this to be a fact as I live 500 feet east of the North Preston site of Park Farms. It is located on Ravenna Ave, not on Preston Road where the permits were given for. This was in my opinion, a deliberate act to destroy my property and as a Farm Bureau member I pleaded with Farm Bureau to prevent this assault on my home. It is the only one of their sites in Marlboro not named for the street on which it is located.

    Protecting these folks has, in my opinion, taken a toll on the integrity of a once proud organization.

  2. lin says:

    This will hurt ALL livestock producers, large and small. It is a ‘foot in the door’ for HSUS’s no animal agriculture agenda and has nothing to do with caring about animals.

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