New Farmers Market Legal Toolkit Free Speech Resource

      Posted On: December 10, 2020

The team at Vermont Law School’s Center for Agriculture and Food Systems (CAFS), in partnership with FMC and NOFA-Vermont, is pleased to share a new legal resource for farmers market operators.  

Many farmers markets face questions about free speechin particular, what types of restrictions markets can place on activities like leafleting, political campaigning, and protesting. Are farmers markets obligated to allow these types of activities as exercises of free speech under the First Amendment? 

A new factsheet, available here, aims to answer this complicated question. Reference it for a background on the legal context of free speech, find out what types of speech can be restricted at any market, and use handy decision trees to make market rules without infringing upon First Amendment rights. 

The factsheet is available on the Farmers Market Legal Toolkit website, along with many other open-access legal resources that help markets become more resilient and accessible.  

For more updates on this and other law and policy resources developed at CAFS, feel free to subscribe to their newsletter or follow them on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook.  

This material is based upon work supported by the National Agricultural Library, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture. 

The Farmers Market Legal Toolkit is a guide to help farmers market operators manage and mitigate risk. It is not to be used as specific legal advice or as a replacement for the expertise of a lawyer.