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Canada’s Ag-gag Bill C-275 Presents a Major Threat to Animal Photojournalism

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Canada’s Ag-gag Bill C-275 Presents a Major Threat to Animal Photojournalism

A new Canadian law would criminalize this. The photograph. Not the cruelty.

HEADER IMAGES: Jo-Anne McArthur | Kristo Muurimaa | Pierre Parcoeur | Stefano Belacchi

Canada’s Bill C-275, a proposed federal ag-gag law would criminalize exposing the plight of farmed animals.

UPDATE: On November 29, Canada’s House of Commons passed Bill C-275, a federal ag-gag bill that will criminalize the work of animal photojournalists exposing animal abuse on farms. The results of this vote are disheartening – for the animals, the state of photojournalism in our country and the Canadian public. Read our full statement.

A proposed new federal ag-gag law in Canada, Bill C-275 has been approved by House of Commons Agriculture Committee. This frightening new law would violate the public’s right to know how millions of animals are treated behind the closed doors of factory farms in Canada. If passed, farms in Canada will operate in virtual secrecy, and those who expose animal suffering or cruelty on farms will face severe fines and the possibility of jail time.

With Canada having some of the worst animal protection laws in the Western world, farmed animals in Canada suffer in the hundreds of millions each year, and their stories are often kept hidden from the public through political and economic agendas. It’s the brave efforts of photojournalists,  investigators and other media workers in Canada ensuring these important stories get told.

“It’s urgent that industrial farming be exposed and drastically curbed; billions of animals are suffering every moment of every day.” — Jo-Anne McArthur

Right now, more than ever, we need your support. As the world’s only animal photojournalism agency and a non-profit, every dollar helps us continue to expose the realities for farmed animals in Canada and around the world.

Animal Photojournalism (APJ) is an emergent genre of photography that captures, memorializes, and exposes the experiences of animals who live amongst us, but who we fail to see. At its core, the images in this pioneering field document the broader human-animal conflict and its resultant ecosystems of suffering. Our existence is intertwined, and the ethics of how we treat the other sentient beings with whom we share this planet are being called into question. Animal photojournalism aims to encourage swift and necessary change on behalf of the beings in the frame.

“Ag-gag turns the attention towards journalists and activists who hope to expose animal cruelty, and away from the cruelty itself. This reinforces Canadian misconceptions that cruel farm practices occur elsewhere and not here. They occur everywhere.”

Jo-Anne McArthur, We Animals Founder & Animal Photojournalist

We Animals

Our photographers tell the stories industry wants to hide. We need your support to stay strong in the face of those who wish to silence animal photojournalism in Canada and around the world. Protect animal stories. Stop Bill C-275.

Louise Jorgensen