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Sen. Jim Norman's ban on farm photography returns

It's been called an "ag gag" and an attack on "croparazzi." Whichever you prefer, Sen. Jim Norman's proposal to ban undercover farm photography is back.

SB 1184, which Norman introduced unsuccessfully in the 2011 session but refiled today, revises a few agriculture statutes before closing with similar language from his previous attempt to implement the ban. His bill would make taking audio, video or photography of farm operations without written permission from the farm owner a first-degree misdemeanor, with several exceptions for various state and local officials.

It's clearly directed at groups like PETA, which aims to expose animal cruelty practices on farms. One organization already paying careful attention this year is the Animal Rights Foundation of Florida.

"Once again, Senator Norman has sided with the owners of factory farms in Florida to prevent the public from learning how animals are treated inside intensive confinement facilities," said ARFF campaigns coordinator Nick Atwood in a statement. "The bill also does a disservice to Florida consumers. Recent undercover investigations at farms have led not only to important improvements in the welfare of animals but also in food safety."

Comments

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Jennie

Thank you for the heads up. Is there a petition to defeat this bill yet?

NANCI LITTLE

How can this man be collecting taxpayer dollars as salary??? He is so anti animal and so pro cruelty as to be shocking! What do those farms have to HIDE? If nothing, why so afraid of shining a light on those practices that this creep wants to make a LAW that only keeps the cruel practices in the dark? PEOPLE BEWARE! THIS MAN IS IMMORAL AND SUPPORTS CRUELTY TO INNOCENT ANIMALS IN ORDER TO PROTECT RICH FACTORY FARM OWNERS!

Paul Jefferies

If you've got nothing to hide you've got no reason to be secretive. This bill should be thrown out, and he should be stopped from repeatedly trying to introduce it. He's clearly on the payroll of the agribusiness industry. But, this is a waste of time, and taxpayers money.

Sonny Stacey

How ironic that this bill resurfaces at the same time that the federal appeals court declares that video taping police officers actions is a constitutional right. Why should what happens in factory farms be hidden from the public???

Ray Vaillancourt

Let's vote him out

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