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Allow Champaign Residents to Keep Hens

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We, the undersigned, seek to amend the Champaign Municipal Code Section 7-5 to permit Champaign residents to keep hens on private property in a responsible manner, subject to reasonable regulations.

Small, properly maintained coops pose no risk to human health.  The knowledge and practice of such skills are extremely valuable in preparing future generations to withstand the economic, climatic, and environmental instability we may face in the years to come.

We believe these benefits of keeping hens to be important:

1. Raising hens in today’s urban environment provides educational benefits for children and adults because it requires stewardship of the urban landscape, ecological responsibility, and conscientiousness of food production.

2. Keeping hens is economically feasible and encourages self-sufficiency.  Hens can be fed food scraps and garden waste such as weeds and overgrowth.

3. Eggs from home-grown hens are more nutritious compared to those from factory farmed hens that are forced to live in unnatural and often unhealthy conditions.

4. Nitrogen rich chicken droppings enrich compost.

5. Hens can provide natural pest control by consuming grubs and insects.


*********************************************************** If you have questions or would like to become involved in the effort contact champaignchickeneffort@gmail.com *********************************************************** St. Jude Catholic Worker House 317 S. Randolph Champaign, IL 61820 217.355.9774 stjudecatholicworker@gmail.com For the past two months we have kept eight hens in our backyard and have enjoyed sharing their eggs with friends, neighbors, and guests. As you may know, Champaign Municipal Code Section 7-5 states that Champaign residents are prohibited from keeping hens. We were recently contacted by city officials and have been ordered to remove the hens by Monday May, 17th or face a fine of $160 each day that the chickens remain. Luckily, our friends at La Casa, a cooperative house in Urbana, will be hosting our hens for the time being as it is legal to have hens in Urbana. The St. Jude Catholic Worker community and other concerned citizens of Champaign-Urbana are coming together to ask city officials to amend the Champaign Municipal Code to permit the responsible keeping of hens on private property. We ask that you attend the City Council meeting Tuesday May 18th to voice support for the amendment and sign the petition to show city officials. If you will not be able to attend the meeting please consider composing a letter that may be shared offering what personal opinions or expertise you may have on the subject. Please also consider submitting a letter to a public forum such as the Independent Media Center or the News-Gazette. We hope that you will pass this message on to others who may be interested in being involved, especially those that live in the city of Champaign.


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