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 Everyone has the right to live on their property without unlawful invasion.
With recent changes to animal welfare standards and guidelines, it is clear that consumer concern has had an impact and trans- parency is healthy.
3.6 Farming groups said trespass has significant impacts on the wellbeing of farmers, especially as many live on their farms.
3.12 In contrast, Aus- tralian Pork Limited sub- mitted that a number of photos uploaded to the Aussie Farms website include close images of farmers’ homes, which has caused distress to these farmers.
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3.10 The NFF also high- lighted the fact that many farms are situated in re- mote locations which are hundreds of kilometres from the nearest enforce- ment agency or nearest neighbour.
Australian Dairy Farmers Ltd agreed that foot and mouth was a strong con- cern, referring to research conducted by the CSIRO, which estimates the cost of an outbreak to the economy could be around $50 billion over 10 years.
Survey ends November 12
Page 14 – Australian Pork Newspaper, November 2022
Clear signage should be part of every biosecurity management plan.
Make sure your voice is heard!
or scan the QR code.
Your responses will help us create better resources for others in your position, and for your veterinarians.
Biosecurity plans to include trespass risk
CREATING and imple- menting a biosecurity plan will help protect your livestock from the threat of pests, weeds and diseases, however the current templates avail- able do not include tres- pass as an entry pathway.
and security of farmers and their families.
to farmers and are “non- violent.”
was “not aware” of any ac- tual biosecurity incidents caused by activists in Aus- tralia.
But what of illegal access onto farms and the risk that poses to biosecurity and other areas of farm safety?
The Victorian Farmers Federation said, “The committee should under- stand that this is your com- munity, your livelihood, your house, that people are coming to.”
3.13 Pork farmer Mr Ean Pollard explained that trespass on his property has led to footage being uploaded to YouTube and “inciting hatred – emails, letters and telephone calls, which made Mr Pollard and his family feel unsafe and question their involve- ment in the industry.
This assertion was sup- ported by the Australian Veterinary Association, which told the committee that its support for the bill is primarily based on its concern about “the high risks to animal biosecu- rity and welfare that are involved with unauthorised entry.”
In September 2019, a senate committee con- ducted an inquiry and proposed a Criminal Code Amendment (Agricultural Protection) Bill, which would introduce two new offences relating to the use of a carriage service to in- cite trespass, property of- fences or other offences on agricultural land.
“That undermines con- fidence.”
In Chapter 3 of the bill, the possible impacts are addressed, taking into consideration the potential positive impacts of the leg- islation on the safety and security of farmers and their families, as well as the role the bill may play in protecting biosecurity, health and safety on agri- cultural land.
3.7 Australian Dairy Farmers Ltd reported that farmers “are scared to leave their elderly parents at home to take care of the farm” in case of activist incursions.
3.14 A director of Ausveg submitted that, similar to “gangs of youths trespassing upon urban houses,” animal activists trespassing upon farms “cause shock, distress, anger” and damage to property.
3.20 Dr Melanie Latter from the AVA said, “Al- though I don’t know of particular cases yet where that’s happened through activism in Australia, it’s a huge risk.”
The following are ex- cerpts from this chapter. Safety and security of farmers and their fami- lies
3.9 Farming groups reported examples of farmers sending their fam- ilies away from their prop- erties when protest activity was expected out of fear for their safety and that farmers feel “traumatised” by activist trespass.
3.21 The AVA also ex- pressed concerns about diseases that are carried on fomites – inanimate ob- jects, such as shoes and clothing.
3.4 The committee heard that activist trespass ac- tivity has a significant im- pact on the health, safety
3.16 Farming groups, meat processing industry representatives and the Department of Agriculture detailed negative impacts of trespass on biosecurity, health and safety, including the potential for the intro- duction of disease patho- gens, the introduction of food contaminants, and potential injury to workers, stock animals and activists themselves.
These include Johne’s disease and foot-and- mouth disease.
3.5 The Attorney-Gener- al’s Department submitted that trespass can ‘make farmers, their families and their employees feel unsafe and intimidated, including in their own homes’, and that farmers have a right to privacy on their land.
He further stated that ac- tivists have not harmed any farmers, but reported that he personally knows activ- ists who claim to have been assaulted by farmers.
3.19 The Department of Agriculture submitted that entry of “unauthor- ised people onto proper- ties breaches on-farm bi- osecurity and increases the risk of animal‐to‐animal, animal-to-human and human-to-animal disease transmission,” which is a threat to animals, farm workers and trespassers.
3.8 The National Farmers Federation argued that the bill will help to reduce the threat to farmers of their homes, properties and businesses being invaded by extreme activists who are philosophically op- posed to animal farming.
3.15 Industry representa- tives proposed that the leg- islation would bring “com- fort” to farmers, meat pro- cessors and other primary producers, and help to keep more people engaged in the agricultural sector. Biosecurity, health and safety
“At the moment, we’re particularly worried about African swine fever, and you would have to say bi- osecurity has never been more important on farms than it is now.”
So they are increasingly vulnerable to attacks and intimidation, and that just exacerbates the fear and anxiety that some of these families are facing.
3.17 Aussie Farms argued that activists are careful to avoid any contamination, wearing “single-use full- body coveralls and boot- covers,” and that there “has not been a single incident of a biosecurity hazard caused by activists.”
3.22 While evidence of biosecurity incidents was limited, Australian Pork provided anecdotal evi- dence of three Queensland piggeries which experi- enced “breakouts of my- coplasma pneumoni”’ in the aftermath of activist incursions.
3.11 Mr Christopher Del- force from Aussie Farms Inc refuted these reported impacts, arguing that “in 45 years of activists docu- menting and uncovering abuse on farms and in slaughterhouses, there has not been a single incident of an activist going any- where near the homes of farmers.”
3.18 The Animal De- fenders Office echoed the view that there have been no biosecurity incidents connected to activist tres- pass in Australia.
3.23 The Australian Chicken Meat Federation argued that actions under- taken by animal activists in relation to biosecurity are insufficient to mitigate biosecurity concerns.
Mr Delforce argued that activists pose no safety risk
When questioned, the RSPCA also advised that it
Executive director Dr
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