July 17, 2018

Ag Gag Bill Fails in Indiana

The Indiana legislature failed to pass S.B. 373, a bill which would have criminalized whistleblowers who expose animal abuse. These so-called “ag gag” laws have been introduced and passed in several states in the past year, after exposes by groups such as the Humane Society have informed the public about animal cruelty and unsafe working conditions.

Chickens in CagesThe bill passed in the Senate on Friday, April 26, 2013, but when the measure was sent to the House, Democrats said that the Senate version was a “gag all” bill. Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma pulled the bill from the calendar and did not allow another vote. That evening, Senator David Long said that the Senate would not vote on “ag gag” in 2013, killing the bill.

The Senate version also made it a crime for someone to text damaging information about businesses such as a nursing home or a restaurant. Democrats claimed that was overreach and would have a chilling effect on anyone who wants to expose wrongdoing. That, Representative Ed Delaney claimed, would have protected unethical businesses or companies that are breaking the law.

The Humane Society issued a press release praising the move. Erin Huang, Indiana state director for HSUS, said in a statement, “clearly the intent of S.B. 373 was to protect animal agribusiness from public scrutiny by criminalizing whistleblowers and those who expose animal abuse on industrial operations. We applaud Indiana’s legislature for recognizing the folly of this dangerous bill and urge lawmakers in states with similar bills pending to follow Indiana’s lead and reject them.”

Comments

  1. YEAH, this is a responsible verdict, throw it out…… It only makes since to an average person, why on earth would we want this protection for companies who MIGHT be doing something that is not legal, what gives them the right to hide behind these AG-GAG laws ……. Wonderful news for all us consumers…. Thank YOU

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