Web­ster wants ac­tivist penal­ties

The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Na­tion­als can­di­date for Mallee Anne Web­ster has called for tougher penal­ties for peo­ple who tres­pass on pri­vate land to ha­rass farm­ing com­mu­ni­ties.

Ms Web­ster said farm­ers worked hard in of­ten un­for­giv­ing con­di­tions, such as the lat­est dry spell, to en­sure crops and their an­i­mals were taken care of and Aus­tralians could have food on their ta­bles.

Ms Web­ster made the com­ments in re­sponse to ve­gan-based an­i­mal-ac­tivist demon­stra­tions and ac­tiv­i­ties across Aus­tralia

“Aus­tralia’s agri­cul­ture in­dus­try not only pro­vides food for us, it pro­vides food for mil­lions of peo­ple across the globe, in­clud­ing Asia and Europe,” she said.

“This isn’t a mat­ter of ide­ol­ogy, this is about peo­ple act­ing il­le­gally.

“For farm­ers, lo­cal busi­nesses, their fam­i­lies and their staff to feel threat­ened in their homes, their place of work, is sim­ply not good enough.

“We are lucky enough to live in a coun­try where you can pub­lish your thoughts and ex­press your views freely; there is no need for this type of be­hav­iour.

“For those who choose to break the law there should be penal­ties. Theft, tres­pass­ing and ha­rass­ment are se­ri­ous be­havioural is­sues and those who choose to act in such a way should be dealt with ac­cord­ingly.

“I would like to see law-abid­ing ve­gans con­demn this lat­est be­hav­iour and show re­spect to the con­tri­bu­tion our farm­ers make to our com­mu­ni­ties.”

Ms Web­ster has joined a cho­rus of com­mu­nity and in­dus­try lead­ers in declar­ing sup­port for farm­ers amid dis­rup­tive protests against the com­mer­cial use of an­i­mals for food and other prod­ucts.

Farm­ers and farm­ing ac­tiv­i­ties and busi­nesses have been among targets of demon­stra­tors.

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