Supporters of the so-called "Right to Farm" constitutional amendment try to evoke an image of the traditional family farmer under attack from "radical activists" and big government regulation. Yet, nothing could be further from the truth -- the reality is that industrial-scale livestock factories that raise millions of animals each year for giant, outside agri-businesses have spread across rural Indiana and put traditional farmers out of business, violated their property rights, and polluted their communities. It's why the proposed "Right to Farm" constitutional amendment ought to be called "Right to Harm".
For example, Richard Himsel, a 71 year-old farmer, born and raised on his family's farm in Danville, Indiana, is faced with leaving his life-long home due to the horrific stench of 8,000 hogs and waste produced at a factory farm recently built just 1,400 feet and upwind from his property. Richard describes the situation this way:
If "Right to Harm" becomes law, giant agri-business will have a constitutionally protected right to engage in the commercial production of meat, poultry and dairy products; in other words, a fundamental right to do what they want to do without regard to small farmers, like Richard Himsel, who find themselves living next to a factory farm.
Please take action now to help us stop this amendment:
1) DONATE TODAY
to support HEC's statewide grassroots education campaign to stop this amendment at hecweb.org/donate
2) CONTACT YOUR STATE LEGISLATORS
to let them know that you are against an amendment to Indiana's constitution that would hamper our ability to enact or enforce safeguards to Indiana's air, water, and land from factory farm pollution.
3) LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ISSUE
and how the "Right to Hunt and Fish" or the "Right to Farm" is really the "Right to Harm" at our Bill Watch page
Please help us to stop the "Right to Harm" amendment and let the Indiana General Assembly know that Hoosiers do not believe that a single special interest should have constitutional protection, but that all Hoosiers do have the right to clean air, water, and land.
Staff Attorney, Water & Agriculture Policy Director
Hoosier Environmental Council