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***USA - ACTION ALERT***

June 15, 2010

USDA Has Announced Two More Public Meeting on its Animal Traceability Framework 

Thursday, June 24
Sheraton Salt Lake City Hotel
150 West 500 South
Salt Lake City, UT 84101

Thursday, July 1
Holiday Inn DFW Airport South
14320 Center Station Drive
Ft. Worth, TX 76155

The meetings will take place between 8 am and 4 pm, and more information is posted at http://www.aphis.usda.gov/traceability/meetings/index.shtml

USDA has stated that there will be additional meetings, but has not yet posted the locations or dates.

The meeting agenda is the same as the recent public meetings in Missouri, Maryland, and Denver.  The morning will consist of presentations by government officials, followed by breakout sessions at tables based on species groups. 

After the small groups have reported back to the full audience, a USDA official will respond to written questions, and there may be an opportunity at the very end for oral questions or comments.

Please come and make your voice heard!  Below are a couple of suggestions to help you be effective:

1) Plan  your written questions ahead of time.  When the USDA official goes through the questions in the afternoon, if he doesn't actually answer your question, stand up and politely insist on an answer. 

2)  At the small group discussion, be prepared to be an advocate for your views and to politely disagree with the facilitator(s).  If they claim that a "consensus" has been reached with an answer that you don't agree with, say so.  At the end, one person from the table will report back to the full group.  Let the spokesperson give his or her report, and then politely speak up to add any points that were covered by the group that were skipped.

For more information on the previous public meetings, visit the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance:  http://farmandranchfreedom.org/action-6-6-10

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