In early September, temperatures in southern Ontario rose above 31°C (88°F). Despite the heat, activists with the animal rights group Sympathy at Slaughter came out to show compassion for the animals who would be suffering in fear in the back of transport trucks arriving at Fearmans Pork in Burlington, Ontario.
What is witnessed in the back of these transport trucks is never a pretty sight. "Each day that I wake up with the thought of bearing witness in mind, I feel a knot in my chest anticipating how much suffering I will see during my visit to the slaughterhouse." Says Hannah Gregus who regularly participates in Sympathy at Slaughter's actions. "But still I go. I go because to at least be present at the scene of another's pain and suffering, even when I cannot stop it, feels important; to be there sending empathy and compassion to as many individuals as I can connect with while the death trucks idle at a stoplight, or stall outside the slaughterhouse-this is worthwhile."
Nevertheless, activists got even more than they had bargained for on this occasion. Instead of the inquisitive faces of pigs gazing back at them, hoping for a sip of water, this time they saw nothing but the corpses of pigs who had died en route.