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Andi Elliott: Animal Cruelty Documented in Idaho

February 8th, 2014 by Halli

By Andi Elliott

Back in 2012 an undercover video of needless and wanton acts of animal cruelty was filmed at Idaho’s largest dairy conglomerate, Bettencourt Dairies, LLC headquartered in Wendell. Yesterday the Idaho Dairy Industry introduced an “Ag Gag” bill designed to keep people from filming acts of animal cruelty on farms. It even goes so far as to make it a crime by merely filling out an application for employment for the purposes of doing such.

I have viewed the video and it’s available on the web. I couldn’t finish watching. Cows confined to milking stalls being beaten and stomped on. Cows were beaten for slipping on wet concrete. Cows were beaten for no reason. One employee spent 102 days in jail; others fled, I’m told. Bettencourt Dairy owner says, “I love my animals and I’ve been in the dairy business since I was a kid. Animal care is a number one issue in our facilities.”

Really, then why support an Ag Gag Law? What do you have to hide? “Ag Gag” laws are designed to keep the public from knowing about the cruelty perpetuated on factory farm animals. I’m no animal rights activist but all creatures deserve to be treated humanely. Almost two weeks ago I contacted Bettencourt asking if some of those that were involved in the cruel treatment of the animals had been rehired as I have been told. As of this writing, I have not received a response.

I would urge you to call your reps and tell them to vote “no” on S1298. Bettencourt is a supplier of milk for Kraft which makes cheese for many of our nationwide fast food chains. Contact them and tell them that institutionalized animal cruelty is not okay in Idaho.

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