Legalizing Urban Chicken in Calgary and Reclaiming Food Sovereignty

Legalizing Urban Chicken in Calgary and Reclaiming Food Sovereignty

May 1, 2020
Petition to
All Citizens of Calgary and Beyond
Signatures: 26Next Goal: 50
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Why this petition matters

Started by Joshua Bateman

To The Citizens of Calgary,

I am writing to you in regards to unfortunate regulations that are preventing Calgarians from achieving food sovereignty as defined by La Via Campesina as “the right of people to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods, and their right to define their own food and agriculture systems.” (Emphasis my own). (La Via Campesina, 2020).

I have a B.Sc. with Distinction from the University of Alberta in Nutrition and Food Sciences with a Minor in Food Policy. I have spent over 2 years on rural farms and as an urban farm intern with Northlands (where we had a chicken coop!), was the Kitchen Coordinator for The Mustard Seed Edmonton, and I am currently the Garden Skills Coordinator at The Alex Community Food Centre. Finally, I have recently started my own Permaculture Consultation and Design Social Enterprise called Patchwork YYC.

I have spent the past 8 years of my life learning everything I can about justice-based and equitable food systems and I have filled the role of Youth Representative for the National Farmers Union for years. One of the most insidious effects of our current food systems is the corporate control that seizes the means of production and forces people to be dependent upon the corporate teat. This is especially inequitable for systemically discriminated people as the right to produce their own food could provide much needed nutrition and beneficial health effects.

Urban chickens have been denied to Calgarians by our City Council in the past. Due to this fact, all people – and especially systemically discriminated people – have been denied the Right to Food that the United Nations states is an undeniable Human Right.

Producing our own food is the healthiest and the most just way to fight corporate control over our lives, connect to our Earth, build community, and address the gravity of a generational gap in agriculture and food skills & knowledge.

I have worked on a Biodynamic, Free-Range, Organic Egg Farm in Australia that had 14,000 chickens. They were also part of a UN Watershed project and treated their chickens with dignity. We had Maremma dogs that protected them and ensured the entire system contributed toward the health of the Land. This farm was peaceful and quiet. Urban chickens (and all urban chicken allowances ban roosters – the noisy ones) are no louder than an urban dog or cat, and indeed the calming clucks of chickens is soothing in the urban environment.

The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization speaks of the Right to Food as “the right to have regular, permanent and unrestricted access, either directly or by means of financial purchases, to quantitatively and qualitatively adequate and sufficient food corresponding to the cultural traditions of the people to which the consumer belongs, and which ensure a physical and mental, individual and collective, fulfilling a dignified life free of fear.” (UNCHR, 2020.

It is our time to Rise and Claim our Right to Food and to Food Sovereignty.

Please sign this petition and pass it on.


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Signatures: 26Next Goal: 50
Support now

Decision Makers

  • All Citizens of Calgary and Beyond