Friday, April 16, 2010

Urban Chicken controversy comes to York Region

As I discussed in my article Things I want to see for Newmarket,

"I also want moves towards the legalization of small urban livestock, hens, rabbits, dwarf goats as part of a greater Right to Farm legislation.
Many urban municipalities in the U.K. and U.S. are once again allowing the ownership of small numbers of well tended food animals. These towns realize that peak oil will eventually impact food production and shipping costs making local food relevant again."

Now I understand that most people don’t want to see animals being slaughtered in the neighbour’s back yard but there is no rational reason that a person should not be allowed to raise a few chickens in a clean, rooster free environment for the production of fresh eggs. A ½ dozen chickens is quieter than a 100 lb dog, produce less waste, are less likely to hurt anyone and are great waste diversion/composting machines. Why should the municipality pay (and the people be taxed) to process green bin contents that can be converted to healthy food in peoples very own yards. The added value to the urban farmer is a supply of quality fertilizer for their gardens.

This brings you to the question “why are you going on about this topic yet again?”

Read this story “Coop ruffles town’s feathers” about East Gwillimbury’s move against a small, clean, urban chicken flock and you'll see why I'm up on my podium again.

While this story does not fit the Newmarket focus of this blog I would be doing the same thing as Mr Froats if I had a bit more time and room, I support the efforts of anyone who promotes urban farming and healthy food and besides I’ve met Jason and his family and they are good people.

If you support Jason’s struggle join the York Region chapter of CLUCK, (CANADIAN LIBERATED URBAN CHICKEN CLUB. For those who are residents of East Gwillimbury please contact your mayor and councillors and ask them to modify or repeal this law.

The CLUCK organization has been speading quicly with a number of local chapters forming around the country in recent months to educate the public and fight poorly designed animal laws. Recently Vancouver has voted to allow chickens and Calgary has backed off an outright ban in favour of a trial program to see if their urban chicken people can opperate without pissing off their neighbours.

In the meantime I hope this story encourages foodies, greens, or civil libertarians in Newmarket/Aurora to follow Jason’s lead in challenging irrational bylaws.

I bet Jamie Oliver would approve!


Anonymous said...

It is about time that attention was drawn to this rediculous banning of chickens for eggs.

I just all around is a good thing to produce eggs for ones family.

Well spoken and lets act on this and all pull together.

Anonymous said...

bring on the eggs.... it is just another comical story to divert from the truth. Ask me a question....

Canadian silver bug/Green Assassin Brigade said...

I'm sure the media sees this as a fluff story but many of us actually see food security is an important issue in light of peak oil and or the global financial melt down still in progress

Anonymous said...

I really want to have a backyard coop with no more than 3 chickens! I'm reading books right now from the library to learn all about it. It's a fantastic idea and I think people have the right to KNOW where their food is coming from.
Factory farms have GOT TO GO!

martin.e said...

I'm all for food security in these times! Given the nasty meltdown that has now been taking place all over the world, well ... seems like common sense to me!

Anonymous said...

I thought it was a neat idea when my neighbour showed my his 3 chicks. But now that they're full grown, they make so much noise that we can't sleep with the windows open. Or we get woken up at 6 am. And my 3 kids get woken up. They make their noise literally every 3 seconds without stopping for the whole day. And since we live in a cookie-cutter subdivision where the backyards are small and close, we can actually smell them. My wife won't take the kids into our own backyard anymore because of the smell.
Great idea, but other people shouldn't lose their right to enjoy their own properties. Maybe on bigger properties or something.

Anonymous said...

3 chickens should not smell if the owner cleans their pen every day or two and turns the waste into an established compost pile. Like a bad dog owner a bad chicken owner can be a nuisance but its about education and standards not chickens.

I can't believe that 3 chickens make that much noise.

Lahore said...

I don't really have a dog in this fight. Although I am a York County property owner, I'm several miles from the water and I don't mind chickens. However, as a history geek I feel the need to point out to "Military Patriot" that is was the Englishman John Locke, not Thomas Jefferson, who originally penned the phrase "life, liberty, and property.
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