Target: Superior Court of California
Goal: Commend court for affirming 2008 farm animal protection law’s constitutionality
The Superior Court of California in Fresno County has upheld the California ballot measure, Proposition 2, that bans the inhumane confinement of egg-laying hens, breeding pigs and veal calves in enclosures that are so small and cramped that the animals cannot stretch its limbs, lie down or turn around, whether due to size or crowding. This ruling is a result of an unsuccessful lawsuit by influential players in the egg industry challenging the law. This is the third lawsuit that they have brought to the court about this law, and each time they have been unsuccessful.
The court rejected the claim that the law was unclear, saying that, “The fact that the statute defines confinement limitations in terms of animal behaviors rather than in square inches or other precise measurements does not render the statute facially vague.”
The law was enacted in 2008 by a statewide vote of more than 63 percent. It won majorities in 47 of 58 counties, including many top agricultural and rural counties. The measure granted producers a phase-in period of more than six years to transition to more humane housing systems, and is scheduled to take effect on January 1, 2015.
Despite being at odds with each other over this law, The Humane Society of the United States and egg producers in California and nationwide are working together in the U.S. Congress to pass federal legislation— the Egg Products Inspection Act Amendments–and phase out the use of barren battery cages over the next 15 years. A very small number of farmers have begun to invest in enriched colony housing systems, which provide each bird with nearly double the amount of space as well as nesting areas and scratch pads so they can engage in more natural behaviors, in hopes that this legislation will pass.
Commend the California court for ruling this law constitutional, since it will help animals like egg-laying hens, veal calves, and breeding pigs that are kept in awful conditions.
Dear Superior Court of California,
Thank you for ruling the Proposition 2 law as constitutional. This law, when enacted, will do wonders for the welfare of animals like egg-laying hens, veal calves, and breeding pigs since they will no longer be confined to tiny enclosures where they can barely move and have no quality of life.
The companies that have opposed this law have a strong agenda, and I commend you for standing up for what is right and ruling this law as constitutional.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Anonymous for Animal Rights via Wikimedia Commons