Decision making process

Update on Toronto Chicken Law

There is finally a feeling of optimism among chicken-keepers and chicken-supporters on the issue of legalizing backyard hens in the City of Toronto.

It is important to understand how the process of changing a bylaw works, and thus the chart. Right now the chicken file is in the Policy Development phase. The next step is a written report. Once the report is written, it will go to one of the Committees, likely the Licensing and Standards Committee. The Committee can then recommend, amend or reject the proposal (50% vote in favour is required).

If it is recommended, it will go to Council for vote (again 50% in favour required).

Finally, if Council votes in favour of it, the bylaw change will be implemented.

What can we do?

The public has input through this whole process. You can contact Councillors at any time, write letters and make deputations to the Committee. The Committee meeting is open to all, and a decision is made at the end of the meeting.
Letters can also be written for the full Council debate, but you cannot make a deputation at Council. Deputations must all be done at Committee.

So, please, if you haven’t already done so, write to your Councillor and copy me at Sign the petition in the link at the top of the page. And check back often to find out the date of the Committee meeting, where we could all go to support the girls!

Likely timing for Committee —-> Spring 2011.


  • Chicken Supporter in Barrie says:

    I live in Barrie ON and would love to keep chickens in my backyard. I would love to know how many backyard chicken supporters there are in Barrie. Can we effect change in Barrie’s Bylaw?

  • Awesome! Let us know if you need some support, we’ve got to get this passed

  • Vaughan Ontario says:

    i would like to keep chickens i live in Vaughan Ontario Canada.

  • Chicken Waiting says:

    Well so far it doesn’t look like this will make it to the Licensing and Standards Committee meeting on March 30. (See schedule: )

    Its not on their schedule yet. Anyone hear anything about which meeting it will be heard at?

  • Chickens in Aurora says:

    I live in Aurora and tried last year, but was turned down by Council. I hope Toronto will make it, as this might help other communities in the area to have the bylaw changed.
    Good luck, Toronto.

  • Anonymous says:

    Count me in too

  • Mr Cluck says:

    I’m going to do everything I can to stop this stupidity. If you were my neighbour I’d take care of your chickens myself.

    You backwards fools.

    • Mr. Cluck needs to go to School says:

      Mr. Cluck either obviously enjoys the negative health effects of centralized food production or just hasn’t educated himself yet. He’s probably one of those types that says – “there’s nothing we can do about chemicals in our food” and the un-prescedented incidence rates of cancer and other diseases in our lifetime. Well, all I can say to Mr. Cluck is that you can’t complain if you or someone you know is affected by it when you are doing nothing to stop it. This is a lot more than chickens. Maybe you should think before you judge so quickly, and I promise we’ll do the same about you.

  • Foghorn Leghorn says:

    I would love to have my own chickens. I’m tired of digesting antibiotic laced eggs. Here’s a true story that may be how the chicken got its name:

    My baby sis came home from school with a yellow baby chick one day. My mom and I took care of it. As a chick, it used to fall asleep in my hand in the warm sun. We kept it in the basement and fed it well. It would follow me around when I took it to the backyard. It always ran up to me if I walked too far. When it was a few months older, I fed it a worm and it went crazy and began pecking at the ground looking for more. Soon, it grew into a hen. It was really hard to sleep at night because it was so noisy. One day, my mom let it out into the backyard. I went out to look after it and instead of approaching me, it squawked and ran away. It was then that I realized it was scared because it was chicken.

  • I keep checking, let us know when this meeting will finally happen. Will be there in full support!

  • Chicken Waiting says:

    I contacted the LSC and they replied with this last month:

    “The report on backyard chickens is being drafted by Public Health and the Toronto Environment Office. It should come to committee sometime this year. I don’t have a specific month at this point.”

    Just keep watching. If you’re interested you should email the LSC to get on their email list for interested persons.

  • Anonymous says:

    dog and cats can be raising like pets why not chicken ?
    and chicken can keep bugs off from my backyard .

  • MatthewT says:

    Hens are easy to care for and make great pets for the kids. There’d need to be some law about roosters though.

    We also need to bring bees into the lime light at some stage.
    Bees are just as important if not more and . Bees are not invasive creatures, yet they are almost always confused with yellow jacket wasps which are a different species.

    Bring back the hen!!

  • Anonymous says:

    So, is it ok now to have chicken?

  • Anonymous says:

    i got caught in Toronto with a micro pig. I hope this law would also allow mini pigs in Toronto

  • I would love to have a few chickens in my backyard. Fresh eggs for my children, any day!!!

  • F H Leghorn says:

    Not in my backyard ! For every urban chicken coupe that goes up and is maintained properly there will be lots that are not .Keep the livestock in the country where it belongs or better yet buy a country property and go play farmer in an enviroment you and your chickens will both love

  • Alj says:

    New to the world of chickens. Have they voted yet? What is the fine? count me in

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