The Canadian government is planning to establish an industrial dairy goat farm at the Joyceville federal penitentiary in Kingston, Ontario. This will potentially be the largest goat farm in Canada, with 2200 goats kept in confinement, using underpaid prison labor to produce large volumes of milk for commercial sale (reportedly to China).
This plan is no good for the goats who will live their life in confinement in unpleasant and unnatural conditions until they’re slaughtered. And it’s no good for the prisoners, either. Instead of rehabilitative programs for this vulnerable population, they’ll face the trauma of taking part in an Intensive Livestock Operation (ILO) that is inherently abusive to animals.
Plus, it’s an environmental nightmare. A massive manure lagoon will be constructed to store 12,000-13,500 pounds of manure a day. The working conditions and compromised air quality (bioaerosols, dust) in industrial animal agriculture increase risks of respiratory illnesses, viral illnesses like COVID-19, and workplace injury. This goat farm could also cause odor, air and noise pollution in surrounding communities, and groundwater contamination.
It’s suspected that if this pilot project goes through, that it will lead to factory farming operations being rolled out in prisons across the country.
The association Animal Justice asks for help to stop this pilot prison “farm” from happening. If we stop this project, we could be stopping a cross-Canada factory farm takeover of the prison system.
The first line of action is signing the petition Evolve Our Prison Farms has just launched. Getting signatures and pressure from places outside of Canada would be very helpful. The petition calls on the government of Canada and the Correctional Service of Canada to immediately halt and cancel this planned prison goat farm, which would have a harmful impact on prisoners, prison staff, the animals, the environment, and surrounding communities.
If you want to play an even more powerful part of this important action, we’re including a list below of possible actions, from the most simple to ones that require a bit more dedication.
Actions to stop the prison factory goat farm
- Sign the petition
- Share on your social media account
- Send a polite and personalized email to the Correctional Service of Canada Commissioner Mrs. Anne Kelly, with other key people CCed. Ask them in your own words to: cancel the planned prison goat farm at the Joyceville federal penitentiary in Kingston because of the harmful impact it will have on prisoners, prison staff, the animals, the environment, and surrounding communities. Please add any other points you’d like from what we’ve shared with you here. If you’re Canadian let them know. If you’re from outside of Canada, you could express your shock that a progressive country like Canada would be running such a socially irresponsible program. Here’s the list of email addresses to copy and paste into the “To:” field of your email: Anne.Kelly@CSC-SCC.GC.CA, Kelly.Hartle@CSC-SCC.GC.CA , firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, Mark.Gerretsen@parl.gc.ca, Scott.Reid@parl.gc.ca
- Call Correctional Service of Canada Headquarters at 613-992-5891. Ask to leave a message for Commissioner Anne Kelly. Leave a polite, reasonable message using similar talking points to what we suggested in the previous action.
Let’s start an tsunami of compassionate action!
Featured image: goats in an industrial farm in Taiwan. Image credit Jo-Anne McArthur / We Animals.