Here in California this month, we are expecting an increase in demonstrations on dairy farms by so-called animal rights activists. Considering that, the Sheriff’s Department of Stanislaus County, suggests the following protocols for preparing your facility, your employees and your family.
Here is what to do:
-Post “No Trespassing” signs VISIBLY every three miles and at every entrance (three on each side if you have a section.
-Reduce all unnecessary Rights of Way access points. Contact your local county sheriff’s office and they can help you determine if this is possible
-Report it to local law enforcement immediately for assistance. Keep your local sherriff’s Phone/Dispatch/Watch Commander contact in your phone and posted at your facility
-Learn who they are and what their concerns are, respectfully
-Notify them that they are on private property and ask them to leave
-Get license plate numbers, take pictures or video record their vehicles
-Contact your cooperative, trade association, or milk handler
-Be aware that they will have cameras and/ or recorders possibly hidden
-Film the activists and their drones; you are legally allowed to do so and they definitely will be filming you. Protect your operation with counter-filming
Here’s what NOT to do:
-Be combative or use force
-Have a large group approach the activists
-Touch or shoot down drones – that’s illegal
-Bring more attention to their cause
They need you to lose your “cool”, get emotional, angry, speak out and act out. The larger the crowd the bigger the spectacle. That’s free publicity. Don’t give it to them.
This article is adapted from the newsletter of Western United Dairymen, Modesto, Calif.