Protest group smashes farmers' privacy

January 22, 2019

A website detailing the location and contact details of Australian farms has caused outrage in the industry with farm groups saying it is an invasion of privacy.

The Conservative Party abhors uninvited intrusions on individual privacy and wants to enshrine property rights as part of its Protected Freedoms Act, to be introduced this year.

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The ABC reports, Animal rights charity, Aussie Farms, created the map and the group's executive director Chris Delforce said it had been made live so the public could view the farms themselves.

"This map is about laying everything bare so the consumers can make their own informed choices about what they wish to support with their purchases," he said.

"It's saying this is where they are, this is what they're doing."

The site has thousands of icons over old and current farms that once clicked, detail information including the location of the businesses and in some cases, the contact details of the farmers.

Australian Conservatives senate candidate for South Australia Rikki Lambert condemned the site, saying "This infringes farmers' privacy and property rights, making them potential targets for animal activists to trespass and smear their family business. In most cases, these are the farmers' family homes. Imagine the outrage if a map of alleged drug dealers homes was published."

National Farmers' Federation president Fiona Simson said she was very concerned about the information on the map being viewable by the public.

"This is really, a huge breach of privacy to be publishing these people's private addresses, their private family homes in conjunction with their businesses online," she said.

Ms Simson said the only reason she could think of, as to why the website had gone live, was to encourage members of the public to trespass on farms.

"Really you can only think the worst thoughts and that is that they intend to trespass, that they are actually publishing those details to encourage people to trespass onto these farms," she said.

"That of course raises not only anxiety and stress for farmers but a number of real issues that farmers have to deal with at the same time."

Mr Lambert points out, though, that elements within the National Farmers' Federation are entertaining diluting farmers right to farm by getting farmers to obtain a 'social licence' for their farming practices. "The radical animal activists who attack farmers' privacy and right to farm are not far removed from the left-wing types who now demand farmers have a 'social licence' to do what 'society' approves of them doing on their own private farm land," he said, "The Senate needs senators who understand the real agenda - the socialist takeover of your right to farm."

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