The Humane Farming Association (HFA) has formed a campaign committee to oppose a controversial ballot initiative that would repeal and replace California's current hen housing law.
HFA's campaign committee, Californians Against Cruelty, Cages, and Fraud, has now been registered with state election officials and is leading the fight against the egg industry initiative that is expected to qualify for the November 2018 ballot.
Background: The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) long contended that the passage of California's Proposition 2 in 2008 guaranteed that all egg industry cages would be completely "banned" by 2015. It also contended that Prop 2 required that laying hens be provided with no less than 216" sq. of floor space per bird.
Now HSUS is promoting a contradictory measure that would replace the hen housing provisions of Prop 2 with the permissive "guidelines" of the United Egg Producers. That's the same egg industry trade association which spent ten million dollars opposing Prop 2 ten years ago.
Referred to by critics as "the rotten egg initiative," the new measure would explicitly legalize egg industry cages throughout California until, at the very least, 2022. It would also sharply reduce the amount of floor space required by allowing the egg industry to confine hens with as little as one square foot (144" sq.) per bird.
Opposition to the initiative is widespread within the animal protection community with a growing number of the movement's leading voices calling for a "NO" vote come November.
"The Humane Society of the United States is once again deceiving voters, flip-flopping on the issue of cages, and perpetuating the suffering of millions of egg-laying hens throughout California," said HFA National Director Bradley Miller.
"The inescapable reality is that, had Prop 2 actually accomplished what HSUS promised, California would be cage free at this very moment," noted Miller. "Rather than correcting its historic failure, HSUS is now misusing our state's ballot measure process with a whole new set of false promises."
More than 125,000 people have already signed an online petition opposing the initiative. And HFA's eye-opening animated short, California's Caged Chickens Say No, has already garnered over 12 million views on YouTube and social media.
"This betrayal of voters and farm animals must be soundly defeated," said Miller. "We promise an extremely vigorous campaign."
The Humane Farming Association (HFA) is dedicated to the protection of farm animals. Founded in 1985, and over 250,000 members strong, HFA has garnered worldwide recognition and respect for its landmark anti-cruelty campaigns including, most notably, its successful National Veal Boycott. HFA is particularly well known for its unparalleled track record of credibility, accuracy, and integrity in addressing legislative issues pertaining to farm animals.
With an unyielding focus on combating the imprisonment of animals in cages and crates, HFA initiated the nation's first major TV, radio, and print media campaigns exposing farm animal abuses; and — among other initiatives — introduced the very first state and federal legislation in the United States targeting factory farm confinement. HFA’s hard-hitting, principled campaigns against factory farming highlight the real-world effect of maintaining integrity and core values while pursuing animal protection.
HFA's goals are to protect farm animals from cruelty and abuse, to protect the public from the misuse of antibiotics, hormones, and other chemicals used on factory farms, and to protect the environment from the impacts of industrialized animal factories. HFA’s comprehensive programs include anti-cruelty investigations and exposés, national media campaigns, and legislation. HFA also provides direct hands-on emergency care and refuge for abused farm animals at HFA’s Suwanna Ranch – the world's largest farm animal rescue and refuge facility.
All combined, HFA's programs and activities represent the greatest hopes of those seeking to create a better world for farm animals.