VICTORY: Fighting Ag-Gag in Ontario with Camille Labchuk

Episode art showcasing a rescue cow
Photo by Jo-Anne McArthur / We Animals Media

Investigations into farms by animal advocacy groups is an essential tool to exposing serious, systemic abuses of animals, failures to follow basic policy, and have led to criminal charges. But the Ontario government wanted to stop that – and introduced Bill 156 in 2020.

The Bill, Security from Trespass and Protecting Food Safety Act, was challenged in court by Animal Justice, with applicants Jessica Scott-Reid (a journalist) and Louise Jorgensen (an advocate with Toronto Cow Save). Intervenors who joined Animal Justice included Animal Alliance of Canada, the Centre for Free Expression at Toronto Metropolitan University, and The Regan Russell Foundation.

After some serious legal work by the aforementioned team, Justice Markus Koehnen of the Superior Court ruled that elements of the law and its regulation violate the right to freedom of expression guaranteed under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Camille Labchuk, Executive Director of Animal Justice, joins Defender Radio to share the background and impact of Bill 156, the significance of defeating elements of it in court, and how that will make a difference for advocates and animals in Ontario and across Canada.

To listen to this episode click the ‘play’ button below, download the MP3, visit us on Apple PodcastsSpotify or Google Podcasts. Get the RSS feed here. Make sure you follow Defender Radio on Facebook and Instagram.


Animal Justice Court Decision Media Release:

Animal Justice Court Decision article:

Read the transcript of Justice Markus Koehnen’s decision:

This episode’s artwork features a rescued cow from Wishing Well Santuary in Bradford, Ontario. Photo by Jo-Anne McArthur / We Animals Media.

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Defender Radio is produced by The Fur-Bearers (, a charitable non-partisan organization whose mandate is to advocate on behalf of fur-bearing animals in the wild and in confinement, promote coexistence solutions in communities and protect the habitats of fur-bearing animals across Canada. You can follow The Fur-Bearers on Instagram (, Twitter ( and Facebook ( 

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