Ohio Animal Welfare Agreement Reached

Historic news out of Ohio this afternoon: the Ohio Humane ballot initiative has been called off in exchange for a string of important animal cruelty concessions (all bullet points below are copied and pasted from HSUS’ press release):

  • A ban on veal crates by 2017, which is the same timing as the ballot measure.
  • A ban on new gestation crates in the state after Dec. 31, 2010. Existing facilities are grandfathered, but must cease use of these crates within 15 years.
  • A moratorium on permits for new battery cage confinement facilities for laying hens.
  • A ban on strangulation of farm animals and mandatory humane euthanasia methods for sick or injured animals.
  • A ban on the transport of downer cows for slaughter.
  • Enactment of a legislation establishing felony-level penalties for cockfighters.
  • Enactment of legislation cracking down on puppy mills.
  • Enactment of a ban on the acquisition of dangerous exotic animals as pets, such as primates, bears, lions, tigers, large constricting and venomous snakes, crocodiles and alligators.

This is huge news since Ohio is a key factory farming state with a powerful agriculture lobby, and there was no guarantee that the ballot initiative—had it gone forward—would have passed. Look for more coverage here later today.

Signature-gatherers should be proud as hell for creating the pressure that allowed this agreement to be hammered out. Link.