January 16, 2012
|For Immediate Release|
We are encouraging supporters of farmers’ rights to grow food without fear and intimidation to assemble outside the courtroom in a peaceful manner to support the farmers in their claims, recognizing that these injustices affect us all and that this case is deserving of the court’s time and attention.
“I don’t think it’s fair that Monsanto should be able to sue my family for patent infringement because their transgenic seed trespasses onto our farm and contaminates and ruins our organic crop,” said organic farmer Bryce Stephens of Jennings, Kansas, and vice-President of OSGATA. “We have had to abandon raising corn because we are afraid Monsanto wouldn’t control their genetic pollution and then they would come after us for patent infringment. It’s not right.”
Due to limited space, only a small number of individuals will be able to enter the courtroom and listen to the proceedings. We respectfully ask that farmers and plaintiffs in the case be given priority to hear this case in person as each plaintiff has traveled many miles and put a great deal on the line to be a part of this case.
Principles for Citizens’ Assembly
2. Assemble peacefully to present a positive message that America’s citizens stand behind family farmers and support their rights of legal protection under the Constitution.
3. Bring signs that portray messages of:
b. The positive impacts of sustainable and organic agriculture
c. Solutions to our current crisis in food, agriculture and society
d. Support for farmers who seek justice in the courts
5. Maintain a respectful distance from the court entry on Pearl Street, making sure not to block access for foot traffic or vehicles.
6. Maintain a tone of respect for the court and the sanctity of our legal process as the judge hears the merits of this important case.
7. Cell phones, cameras and tape recorders are prohibited inside the courthouse. Those who enter the courthouse must conform to court security protocols.
8. No signs, t-shirts with slogans or other disruptions, visual or otherwise, are appropriate or allowed in the courtroom.
9. No chanting or loud noises allowed outside the courthouse as all must maintain their conduct in ways that are respectful to the judicial process and in accordance with the seriousness of the case.
10. Please follow the instructions of designated assembly captains who will continue to update you as the events of the day unfold.
Location to Hear Plaintiffs and Attorney Comment After Hearing
Action! Click here to RSVP to attend the Citizen’s Assembly.
About Maine’s Wood Prairie Farm (www.woodprairie.com; 800-829-9765)
Wood Prairie Farm is located in Aroostook County, the largest county east of the Mississippi River and Maine’s historic center of potato farming. For over 35 years, Jim Gerritsen, his wife Megan and their family have used organic farming techniques on the fertile land of Wood Prairie Farm to grow the finest potatoes, seed, vegetables and grain nature will produce. Wood Prairie Farm is MOFGA Certified Organic, and its seed potatoes, kitchen potatoes, seeds and other products are available direct to the customer by mail order from its website and catalog. Wood Prairie Farm is on Facebook at www.facebook.com/woodprairiefarm.
Additional information about OSGATA et al v. Monsanto is available at www.woodprairie.com/wpf_news.