In Defense Of Animals Applauds Historic McClatchy Chimpanzee Exposé

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In Defense Of Animals Applauds
Historic McClatchy Chimpanzee Exposé

[Ed. Note: To learn more about the lives of chimpanzees in laboratories, visit our Image Gallery and also visit Stop Animal Exploitation NOW! (SAEN) for articles, images, laboratory facility reports, investigatory publications and more. Also visit Alternatives to Animal Testing and Animal Experimentation - Frequently Asked Questions.]

From In Defense of Animals (IDA)

It is unmistakably clear why the NIH fought for years in federal court to prevent the release of these records. They provide the first ever detailed look behind the locked doors of chimpanzee experimentation laboratories, and reveal the shocking physical and psychological suffering needlessly inflicted on our closest genetic cousins, who for decades have been have been subjected to painful experiments that continue to this day.

At over 5,700 words accompanied by video, pictures, and graphics, the McClatchy series is almost certainly the most in-depth reporting of the issue of chimpanzee experimentation ever published. It has exposed for the first time to a worldwide audience the profound mental and physical anguish that chimpanzees endure in labs. Such suffering, together with the scientific move away from using chimpanzees, makes this series a game-changer in the fight to end chimpanzee experimentation once and for all.

In Defense of Animals applauds the three-part "Special Report" on chimpanzee experimentation by the April 2011 McClatchy Newspapers investigative reporter Chris Adams, which has been featured in papers nationwide including the Sacramento Bee, San Jose Mercury News, Kansas City Star, Miami Herald, Arizona Republic, and Charlotte Observer; high-profile blogs such as the Huffington Post and DailyKos; and linked to by international media such as the Toronto Star and India Times.


Before and/or after "experimentation"?
Image from In Defense of Animals

At over 5,700 words accompanied by video, pictures, and graphics, the McClatchy series is almost certainly the most in-depth reporting of the issue of chimpanzee experimentation ever published. It has exposed for the first time to a worldwide audience the profound mental and physical anguish that chimpanzees endure in labs. Such suffering, together with the scientific move away from using chimpanzees, makes this series a game-changer in the fight to end chimpanzee experimentation once and for all.

McClatchy – the third-largest newspaper chain in the U.S. – based its series on thousands of pages of chimpanzee medical records obtained by IDA in a groundbreaking Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the National Institutes of Health (NIH). IDA won that five-year lawsuit after a federal judge issued two resounding opinions against the NIH, and ordered the agency to provide IDA a public interest fee waiver for the ongoing release of tens of thousands of pages of medical records for all chimpanzees at the Alamogordo Primate Facility in New Mexico.

It is unmistakably clear why the NIH fought for years in federal court to prevent the release of these records. They provide the first ever detailed look behind the locked doors of chimpanzee experimentation laboratories, and reveal the shocking physical and psychological suffering needlessly inflicted on our closest genetic cousins, who for decades have been have been subjected to painful experiments that continue to this day.

IDA Research Director Eric Kleiman submitted the FOIA request to the NIH and initiated the winning lawsuit based on that request, with the generous pro bono legal assistance of Spriggs & Hollingsworth, co-founded by attorney William J. Spriggs. After receiving thousands of pages of records from the NIH pursuant to a settlement of the lawsuit, Kleiman approached McClatchy for an exclusive and provided the records unconditionally for McClatchy’s review regarding the chimpanzees’ lives, and deaths, as documented in their medical records.

The McClatchy expose is only the tip of the iceberg. IDA views these medical records, which the NIH must continue to provide to IDA for years, as the next phase in our longstanding fight to end chimpanzee experimentation. These records comprise the most compelling evidence yet of the scientific and moral bankruptcy of experimentation on chimpanzees, and why it must stop now.