Animal Aid

Major threat to animals in laboratories

Posted 25 October 2011

The new European Directive governing animal research across the EU is now in the process of being introduced into UK law. The Home Office recently had a consultation on the issue, which Animal Aid and many other animal rights groups responded to, urging the government to adopt the best possible measures for animals in laboratories. However, the UK Bioscience Sector Coalition and its lobbying are posing a major threat to animal welfare.

The Coalition represents powerful bodies such as the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry and the Medical Research Council. It also contributed to the Home Office consultation, and it is clear from its submission that the animal research industry intends to use all its considerable influence to press for substantially less regulation of its activities. Among the worrying proposals it puts forward are:

  • A laxer licensing regime, which minimises the amount of details researchers have to provide, and allows them to change the design of procedures as they go along, and audit experiments themselves
  • Scrapping the ban on the use of great apes, and stray cats and dogs, and continuing to allow the use of wild-caught primates as breeding stock
  • Lowering standards of care and accommodation unless concrete evidence is provided that such a move would harm animals
  • Restricting public information about animal experiments

Please write to your MP and urge them not to allow these dangerous proposals to become part of UK law.

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