Can’t They Count?
One of the most significant questions about animal experimentation deals with the simple issue of numbers: How many animals are used? Most experts quote statistics from the United States Department of Agriculture/Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA/APHIS). These numbers are based on the reports filed by the laboratories themselves. However, these reports are often misleading.
Our continuing investigations of major laboratories recently uncovered startling discrepancies within the reports of Yale University and the Harvard Medical School/New England Regional Primate Research Center (NERPRC).
Yale’s report literally contradicted itself. The front page of Yale’s annual report to the USDA/APHIS listed experimental use of 32 primates and another 71 held for conditioning. The report attachments listed depriving 22 primates of water and depriving another 65 primates of food. Yale experimented on either 65 or 87 primates. However, a July, 1998 USDA inspection report for Yale facilities listed a total primate inventory of 198, instead of the 103 Yale had reported.
The report filed by the Harvard Medical School with USDA/APHIS disclosed a primate total of 336 for fiscal 1998. However, the Progress Report for the NERPRC (filed by the Harvard Medical School) listed a primate colony total of 1561 primates for a difference of 1225 primates. Harvard had reported one number to USDA/APHIS, and a different number to the National Institutes of Health.
On June 3, 2002, Stop Animal Exploitation NOW! filed an official complaint with the USDA/APHIS requesting an investigation of Harvard and Yale for violating the Animal Welfare Act.
We will keep you informed of the results of our latest official complaint. We will continue to investigate major laboratories across the U.S. and we will expose all abuses that we discover.
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