PETITION TARGET: Congress
California has made history by saying “No” to products made from mother pigs, baby cows, and hens hellishly forced to languish in spaces so small they couldn’t even turn around as part of the food production system.
And the Supreme Court has upheld that decision, known as Prop 12 — ruling that states have long held the Constitutional right to regulate what types of products are sold within their borders.
But now, a controversial bill, likely to only benefit agriculture’s mega-corporations, seeks to undermine that commonsense victory. The Ending Agricultural Trade Suppression (EATS) Act would ban states from regulating “pre-harvest production” of agricultural products — even if the states’ regulations were in place to protect local health and safety. The Act also would allow individuals to sue states for financial damages if they violate the Act.
While immediately seeking to sidestep voter-approved animal welfare regulations in Prop 12, the broad and vague language of the EATS Act, if passed, also would set a precedent for possibly overturning more than 1,000 other state laws, according to a Harvard analysis.
That’s bad news for animals — with several states having passed laws banning cruel tests on animals for cosmetics, the killing of wildlife in cruel “contests,” the slaughter of horses for their meat, and the exploitation of defenseless dogs in puppy mills.
But it’s also bad news for us, because the possibly impacted laws span more than just animal welfare — with numerous state-specific regulations on outside agricultural products also seeking to protect consumers from zoonotic diseases, introduced species that could decimate local food supplies, harmful pesticide and fertilizer use, pollution, and child labor.
More than 200 legislators across the political spectrum have openly opposed the EATS Act — saying the bill will hurt small farmers and infringe upon states’ rights. Hundreds of others — including environmental and animal protection groups, small farmers and ranchers, veterinary professionals, legal scholars, and food and public safety groups — also have condemned the bill.
It’s time to protect animals, the environment, and American families; make your voice heard today by signing our petition opposing the EATS Act.
Then, please take a moment to contact your legislators (Use the ones listed under “Federal.”) and tell them directly that you don’t want them to support the EATS Act!