Press Release

Toronto Chickens Supports Charter Challenge in Upcoming Court Case

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  The working group of backyard chicken owners in Toronto, Toronto Chickens, fully endorses the upcoming Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms challenge that has been undertaken by Calgarian Paul Hughes.

Mr. Hughes’ court case is set for March 5, 2012 and will be a game changer for those in the urban food movement. He is challenging his city’s bylaws that disallow the possession of urban chickens in Calgary. As a group that is working to change Toronto’s bylaw so that urban hens will be allowed again in the city, Toronto Chickens will monitor the course of this upcoming trial very closely.

We call upon Toronto city councilors and city bylaw officers to suspend enforcement of the chicken bylaw until the results of this case are determined. This court trial challenges the federal Charter of Human Rights and therefore will impact all Canadians and override any municipal rulings.

For further information contact:


  • Chicken No Longer Waiting says:

    Wow! This is great! I would have never thought it would come to this, but I hope there is a positive outcome for us outlaws. Seeing as we live in a city who doesn’t even care to read a report or study the idea further, it looks like we have to look to the feds to sort this one out. Thanks for keeping us up to date!

  • Craig says:

    There’s a lot of talk behind doors, probably; themeetings are largely for show and to perform PR.

    You need to get ht eprivate ears of powerful members of the committee. Remember; There are strong interests in keeping up “standards” and keeping out barnyard animals.

    The fight for natural gardening and wildflower lawns was also brutal.

  • David says:

    Large-scale farming corporations have strong lobbying power even at the Municipal level.

  • Chicken No Longer Waiting says:

    Apparently the judge will be waiting until early May to announce her decision.

  • Chic runner says:

    I have been selling many chicks the last few weeks… Let’s go backyard chicken. As long as you keep a clean site… We should be sternly against anybody keeping a fowl unkept backyard flock..

  • Chicken No Longer Waiting says:

    So apparently the judge won’t be delivering her judgement until September now in the Paul Hughes case. Why is this issue always delayed?!

  • Cluckity cluck cluck says:

    Any update on this, especially as it pertains to Toronto? Apparently the municipality has dropped the charges. Will a court ruling still be made?

  • Toronto Chicken says:

    As I understand it, there was a great deal of supporting information/documents provided to the judge, and she needs the time to go through it all.


  • Pamela says:

    My petition comment: I support hen raising in the City of Toronto, for all of the above reasons. If owners keep their coops clean and restrict themselves to hens only, no noisy roosters or breeding, this is a good thing. There will always be one or two bad neighbours who don’t abide by the laws, but they have plenty of other ways to annoy fellow residents, i.e., keeping their yards messy, blaring loud music, letting garbage pile up, doing unpermitted renovations, not maintaining their homes well, and so on. This is the 21st century, not the 19th, when people may have wanted to have all manner of livestock in residential neighbourhoods. The chicken keepers typified by this movement tend to be enviro-friendly and eco-minded, and I support their right to raise a few hens in their backyards and enjoy the eggs.

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