Come out to support a factory farm moratorium bill!

Momentum for a factory farm moratorium is growing! A new survey by the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future found 63% of Iowans support a factory farm moratorium. This is something every state legislator needs to hear! And we aim to tell them on January 23!

Plan to join IARA members at the Iowa State House on Thursday morning January 23 to lobby on a factory farm moratorium bill. With Iowa’s water quality crisis getting worse every year, we need a moratorium NOW! RSVP here!

Here is the schedule for the Stop Factory Farm Lobby Day:

8:30 – 9:00    Wallace Building Auditorium – Register, enjoy some hot coffee, and get ready for an exciting day

9:00 – 9:45    Prep and Training Session – Get talking points on the moratorium bill, find out who we’re targeting, and get some basic lobbying training from CCI’s Adam Mason and Food and Water Watch’s Krissy Kasserman.

10:15 – 11:00  Lobby Day Rally in the State Capitol Rotunda – Get fired up (and let’s fire up legislators) with some brief talks by our powerhouse lineup:

  • Representative Sharon Steckman, 
  • David Osterberg, Iowa Policy Project
  • Maureen McCue, Physicians for Social Responsibility Iowa Chapter
  • Kim Stephens, CAFO neighbor and Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement member
  • Tatiana Schaapherder, High School Climate Activist
  • Emma Schmit, Food and Water Watch
  • Emceed by Diane Rosenberg and Chris Petersen, Iowa Alliance for Responsible Agriculture

11:00 – 12:30 Lobbying State Legislators

12:30 – 1:00   Debriefing – Time to share what you learned on legislators’ positions

RSVP here to let us know if you can join us.

Here’s where to go:

Wallace Building Auditorium, 502 E. 9th Street, Des Moines (Across the street from the State Capitol)

Iowa State Capitol, 1007 E. Grand Avenue, Des Moines

Legislators listen when we show up in numbers. Let’s turn out in force on January 23 to stand up for clean water, clean air, public health, and environmental justice. It’s time for a factory farm moratorium NOW!

RIGHT TO HARM screenings are now being scheduled in Iowa. Find out where you can view the film – or schedule one for your community. 

Right to Harm is a national exposé on the public health, environmental, and lifestyle impacts of factory farms. Award-winning filmmakers Matt Wechsler and Annie Speicher (SUSTAINABLE) document the ongoing battle with factory farms in Iowa as well as in Wisconsin, North Carolina, Arizona, and Delmarva.       

Find out where Right to Harm is screening in Iowa. Here’s the schedule.

Schedule a screening for your community here.

Each of Iowa’s 13,000 factory farms are built in communities of neighbors who have few protections and little ability to have a meaningful say a confinement’s location. Right to Harm addresses the devastating ramifications that many families in Iowa and across the US experience from these inadequately regulated livestock factories.

Wechsler and Speicher address the “human welfare” impacts of factory farms, revealing the social injustice of this industrial system that is largely unknown to a broad swath of US consumers.

The film also exposes the failures of state agencies to adequately regulate industrial agriculture and chronicles actions taken by disenfranchised citizens demanding justice from their legislators.

Iowa’s Fight Featured in Right to Harm: The Iowa segment examines the plight of an Iowa County resident who was confronted with two 1200-head CAFOs built across from his family’s 145-year old farm shortly after he retired there. It also features the efforts of many Iowans coming together to protect their communities.

Watch the Trailer:

Last week 100 Iowans from across the state gathered at the Iowa State House to lobby in support of HF 203, a factory farm moratorium.  IARA supporters along with Iowa CCI and Food & Water Watch members met with nearly 30 state legislators then concluded the day with a rousing press conference and rally.

Many thanks to everyone who were able to get through the snow-covered roads to make it to Des Moines. It was a great day and a powerful moment to see so many factory farm activists crowded together at House Chamber steps speaking with their elected officials.

We still have some follow-up work to do. 

HF 203 was introduced to the Environmental Protection Committee, chaired by Rep. Dean FisherBut Rep. Fisher is refusing to assign the moratorium bill to a subcommittee, the next step in moving legislation forward. We tried to meet with Rep. Fisher last week, but many of us were told he was out of the chamber.

It’s completely unacceptable that Rep. Fisher is single handedly holding up HF 203. Assigning it to a subcommittee would provide an opportunity for the bill to be debated and possibly scheduled for a public hearing. This is an issue of critical importance for Iowans all across the state.

Rep. Fisher needs to hear from us. Can you help? Would you take a few minutes to either call him at 888-724-8946 or email dean.fisher@legis.iowa.gov and tell him to assign HF 203 to a subcommittee?

Here are some points you can include:

  • As chair of the Environmental Protection Committee, please assign HF 203 to a subcommittee.
  • The bill has 13 official cosponsors and another seven supporting the bill. At the very least, it deserves to be discussed.
  • The bill is pro-agriculture as it would enable MORE hog farmers to get back on the land as independent hog farmers.
  • We need to take a temporary pause on building new and expanding CAFOs so we can get a handle on the ways that factory farms impact Iowans and our waterways all across the state.
  • Thank him for seriously considering your request.

Want more talking points? Find them here: Talking Points; Why Iowa Needs a Factory Farm Moratorium

After your call, please email us at info@cleaniowanow.org and let us know how it went.

PS – If you missed the day, check out this recording with highlights of the press conference and rally.

Then check out some press coverage hereKTVOPilot Tribune, and Public News Service

Photo credit: Karla Conrad