Undercover investigations by animal advocates are an important tool in exposing the cruel realities of factory farming. However, industrial agriculture is continuing the tactic of introducing anti-whistleblower legislation (often referred to as “ag-gag” bills) to prevent the investigation and exposure of cruel conditions endured by animals on factory farms.
As of the 2013 legislative session, anti-whistleblower bills have passed in six states (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Utah) but have been defeated in many more (Arkansas, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Wyoming). Many legislators have come to understand how harmful these bills are, and in 2013, out of the 15 ag-gag bills introduced, not one became law.
In the early months of 2014, anti-whistleblower legislation was introduced in Indiana, Arizona and Idaho. The Indiana bill, S.B. 101, as introduced, would have criminalized actions by whistleblowers who intentionally enter upon another’s property where cruelty is taking place and expose the practice—thereby causing "pecuniary loss" to the perpetrator. Fortunately, the Indiana legislature removed this provision and now the bill focuses on trespassing and property damage, not criminalizing investigations. Sadly, the Idaho legislature passed its ag-gag bill, which is now awaiting the governor’s signature. The Arizona bill is on the same path as it moves quickly through the legislature. More anti-whistleblower bills are expected to pop up this year, but with your help we can fight them.
What You Can Do
If you are a citizen of one of the states with current ag-gag legislation, please visit our action alert pages (Arizona and Idaho) that ask legislators to oppose the bills. If you are outside of those states, we will continue to update you and ask for your support as anti-whistleblower bills are introduced.