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Let’s Talk About It! Encourages Farmers to Engage in Conversations About Safety for Canadian Agricultural Safety Week

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  • Let’s Talk About It! Encourages Farmers to Engage in Conversations About Safety for Canadian Agricultural Safety Week

Ottawa, ON, February 13, 2014: This March, the Canadian Agricultural Safety Association (CASA) and the Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) are encouraging producers to talk about farm safety as part of Canadian Agricultural Safety Week, which runs from March 9 to 15, 2014.

Canadian Agricultural Safety Week (CASW) is an annual public education campaign focusing on the importance of safe agriculture. In 2014 the theme is Let’s Talk About It!, and organizers want to inspire farmers to engage in conversations about safety through a combination of farmer testimonials, producer resources, and videos.

“This year we are showcasing stories of producers who have experienced injuries or who have made innovations for safety on their farm, and we’re putting these stories to video as part of our Let’s Talk About It! Video Series to help get the word out in a new way,” says Marcel Hacault, Executive Director of CASA. “We’ve also developed resources for farmers that will help them conduct safety meetings and explore topics like talking to your kids around safety or overcoming language and cultural barriers with migrant workers,” he adds. “The idea is to get people talking about farm safety as a first step towards a safer, more successful farm.”

“It’s human nature to think ‘it won’t happen to me,’ but unfortunately it can, especially if we continue on with this approach. Taking preventative, proactive measures is one of the best things we can do for our farm and workers. We hope that through safety week and through hearing from other farmers about their experiences, we shed some light on the necessity of farm safety and practical ways to make it happen on the farm,” says CFA President Ron Bonnett.

Farm Credit Canada is a long-time and ongoing sponsor of CASW. “In our fast-paced industry, it’s important to take the time to think about the safety and well-being of the people who grow our food,” says Remi Lemoine, Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at FCC. “We’re committed to helping Canadian producers stay safe at work, and encourage thoughtful planning through written health and safety plans.”

As part of CASW, CASA and CFA are also working with Ag for Life and Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development to host Let’s Talk About It! launch activities in Olds, Alberta on March 11th, 2014. Activities include a luncheon with speeches from farm safety champions and testimonials from Alberta farmers showcased in the Let’s Talk About It! Video Series, as well as a half-day training session on best practices in safety orientation for seasonal and migrant workers featuring presentations from Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development and CASA.

“Agriculture in Alberta is not only a significant economic driver, it’s a way of life,” says David Sprague, CEO of Agriculture for Life. “Ag for Life and its founders support the well-being of this industry by providing farm and rural safety programming to children, youth and adults in schools and in their communities. Encouraging our farm families and communities to talk about safety during Canadian Agricultural Safety Week is a great way to raise the awareness of keeping everyone safe and we’re honoured to be part of this national initiative.”

Canadian Agricultural Safety Week takes place every year during the third week of March. This year, CASW runs from March 9th to 15th, 2014. For more information about CASW or Alberta launch activities, or to access CASW media kits, go to www.agsafetyweek.ca. Media kits include press releases, feature farmer profiles, safety advice articles, psas and radio psas, graphics and more. Let’s Talk About It! Video Series items as well as b-roll from the launch will be posted to the campaign website in the lead up to, throughout, and following CASW. Producer Tools including 20 Toolbox Talks funded by Pioneer Hi-Bred Limited, and four Farm Talk Series resources are available under: www.agsafetyweek.ca/producer-tools.

CASW is brought to you by the Canadian Agricultural Safety Association and the Canadian Federation of Agriculture with assistance from the Government of Canada through Growing Forward 2, a federal, provincial and territorial initiative. In 2014, CASW partners and sponsors include long-time corporate sponsor Farm Credit Canada, Ag for Life, Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, CHS, Imperial Oil and Pioneer Hi-Bred Limited.

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For more information contact:

Michelle French Lancaster, CASA Communications, Tel: 1-877-452-2272 E-mail: mfrenchlancaster@casa-acsa.ca
Jessica Goodfellow, CFA Director of Communications, Tel: 613-236-3633 ext. 2322 E-mail: communications@cfafca.ca