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The Mary T. and
Frank L. Hoffman
Family Foundation


Letters and Responses



Letter to Rep. John E. Sweeney Concerning Chimpanzees

11 February 2002

The Honorable John E. Sweeney
416 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Representative Sweeney:

Last year, Congress passed the Chimpanzee Health Improvement Maintenance and Protection (CHIMP) Act. The Act creates a federally supported system of sanctuaries to retire chimpanzees from laboratories. The NIH is now in the process of enacting this law, and has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) that clearly violates the intent and spirit of the Act.

If the NIH has its way, as many as 900 chimpanzees will be retired to "sanctuaries" where invasive research will be permitted. The RFP requires sanctuaries to adhere to laboratory standards that are neither cost-effective nor are in the long-term interest of the chimpanzees. It also mandates that any infants born (despite a breeding ban) at the sanctuaries be sent immediately to research laboratories.

This situation is urgent. The Coulston Foundation, the notorious chimpanzee-testing laboratory that has continually violated federal law, now faces imminent foreclosure. The lives of 250 chimpanzees hang in the balance.

As your constituent I urge you to contact HHS Secretary Tommy Thompson to urge that the CHIMP Act be implemented to reflect Congressional intent and to provide for permanent retirement of chimpanzees from laboratories. Please also ask Secretary Thompson to see that the Coulston chimpanzees are included under the provisions of this important legislation. Thank you very much.

Very truly yours,

Frank L. Hoffman

Mary T. Hoffman

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