The Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, 2020 (Bill 156) received Royal Assent. The Act will further protect against the health and safety risks of on-farm trespassing.
In recent years, farmers have faced increased levels of trespass and theft of livestock from their farms as well as mental health stress due to these threats. Bill 156 will increase protections for those farmers while simultaneously protecting the right for people to participate in lawful protests on public property.
The Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, 2020, helps deter trespassers by:
- Escalating fines of up to $15,000 for a first offence and $25,000 for subsequent offences.
- Prescribing aggravating factors that would allow the court to consider factors that might justify an increased fine.
- Allowing the court to order restitution for damage in prescribed circumstances which could include damage to a farmer’s livestock or from theft.
- Increasing protection for farmers against civil liability from people who were hurt while trespassing or contravening the act, provided the farmer did not directly cause the harm.
- Removing consent to enter a farm property when it was given under duress or false pretenses.
To read the full statement from the Ontario Government, click here.