Despite a recent poll showing that 74 percent of North Carolina voters oppose anti-whistleblower Ag Gag bills, the state House and Senate have each passed a measure that would criminalize whistleblowers who expose wrongdoing at factory farms.
Now the bill goes to Governor Pat McCrory, who we are urging to veto this legislation.
Two previous versions of this bill failed miserably. There’s a reason for that. Despite changes in the wording of the bill, its ultimate aim remains the same: to silence whistleblowers and hide the truth from the public.
Our client, North Carolina chicken farmer-turned-whistleblower Craig Watts, explains in The News & Observer why he opposes Ag Gag bills that intend to keep factory farms hidden from the public eye. “We need more transparency, not less, if we are going to fix this broken food system.” Hence why he bravely opened up his barn doors: “to show the public the conditions of an average poultry farm and how they were being misled into thinking the situation is better than it is.”
North Carolina native and actress Bellamy Young (best known for her role as First Lady in ABC’s drama series Scandal) calls the bill “an attempt to protect criminals.” In a passionate op-ed, she quotes animal expert Dr. Temple Grandin, who said: “Ag Gag bills are the stupidest thing that ag ever did.”
Sarah Damian is Communications Manager for the Food Integrity Campaign.
This is the first of several videos released as part of FIC’s “Ag Gag Undercover” series to raise awareness about the controversial anti-whistleblower bills introduced in various U.S. states.