USDA investigates OHSU's primate research center after monkey dies
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ACTION ALERT:

Contact the USDA to Demand MAX FINES against Oregon Health & Science University:

Dr. Robert Gibbens
Director, Western Region, USDA
(970) 494-7478
Robert.M.Gibbens@aphis.usda.gov
acwest@aphis.usda.gov

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Thank you for launching an investigation into the federal violations committed by Oregon Health & Science University. Please levy the MAXIMUM FINE against Oregon Health & Science University for their blatant disregard of the Animal Welfare Act when their negligence killed and injured many primates during the last several years, including: one monkey dead of strangulation, one monkey with necrotic lesions, two who were burned, six dead and twenty-one seriously injured during fights, and more than 50% of the monkeys with significant hair loss.

Their behavior should NOT be tolerated and MUST be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

USDA investigates OHSU's primate research center after monkey dies
By Lynne Terry, The Oregonian/Oregon Live, March 3, 2016

Federal regulators are investigating Oregon Health & Science University's primate research center in Beaverton following the death of a monkey.

The investigation was opened last week, according to Tanya Espinosa, a spokeswoman with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The agency's Animal and Plant Inspection Service regulates primate research centers. Espinosa did not release information about the scope of the investigation.

The Oregon National Primate Research Center learned about the investigation after contact by a reporter.

"We support and adhere to the appropriately stringent Animal Welfare Act and Animal Welfare Regulations," Nancy Haigwood, director of the center said in a statement. "The primate center is regularly reviewed by federal agencies for adherence to relevant regulations and also participates in a volunteer accreditation program that assures our programs are taking extra steps to achieve excellence in animal care."

The investigation was opened just over two weeks after a complaint by an animal rights group, Stop Exploiting Animals Now, over the monkey's death. The group's director, Michael Budkie, called on the USDA to levy the maximum fine of $10,000 per animal. There are nearly 5,000 animals at the facility which is used as a test ground for vaccines and other research.

The death was first reported in a USDA inspection report in January. The report said the animal died last October after becoming entangled in a chain that held an enrichment device in the animal's cage.

Haigwood said last month that the primate center corrected the problem with the foraging equipment as soon as it was discovered and informed authorities. "USDA officials also confirmed that our response to this incident was appropriate and the strategy to prevent this in the future was satisfactory," she said in a statement.

An investigation can lead to a warning, which lets the facility know it will be under closer scrutiny, Espinosa said. The USDA can also issue a fine. In 2012, the USDA fined OHSU nearly $12,000 after several monkeys died.

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