Washington, March 21 (IANS/RIA Novosti) Politicians in several states across the US are working to ban undercover video in factory farms, a move that is receiving tremendous pushback.
The move has stemmed from a growing number of undercover investigations where animal rights advocates infiltrated slaughterhouses to secretly document animal abuse.
“Our investigations have resulted in meat recalls, animal cruelty convictions, and changes to federal regulations,” said Paul Shapiro, spokesperson for the Humane Society of the US (HSUS).
“The meat industry’s response hasn’t been to try to prevent the abuses, but rather it’s been to try to prevent the American public from finding out about the abuses in the first place,” Shaprio said Wednesday.
Over the past five years, animal rights groups have uncovered dozens of cases of animal cruelty at factory farms and slaughterhouses using undercover video and photography, the spokesperson said.
“We’ve seen workers punch and kick animals, attach chains to their necks and drag them. In some cases they would shove water hoses up the nostrils of sick animals to try to force them to stand,” Shapiro said.
Other reported instances include cases of pigs and chickens that spend their entire lives locked in cages that are so small they are unable to lie down or turn around, the HSUS reported.
At least a dozen states including California, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Arkansas have introduced legislation categorised by animal rights activists as “anti-whistleblower” laws.