FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, November 13, 2003
Contact: Michael Budkie, SAEN 513/575-5517
As University of Wisconsin Yields to Activist Pressure, USDA Confirms Investigation
Madison – As the
University of Wisconsin, Madison announces major changes in
administration policy for painful experiments on primates, government
officials have confirmed the UW is under investigation.
In a November 12th article in the Daily
Cardinal, Christopher Coe of the UW states that researchers at the
UW Primate Research Center will be required to
adhere to more rigid classifications
regarding the definition of distress in
experiments. Coe also stated that:
"Most [nationwide] researchers underreport distress categories because
there is no good definition of distress."
These admissions come as the United States Department
of Agriculture/Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service confirms that it
has launched an investigation of the UW in response to an "official
complaint" filed by Stop Animal Exploitation NOW! (SAEN), a national
research watchdog organization.
SAEN filed the complaint against the UW in late
October for conducting painful/stressful experimentation on primates
without anesthesia, and lying to federal regulators at the USDA about
it. Internal government and university documents confirm 109 primates at
the UW were used in potentially painful/stressful experiments. The
complaint also requests investigations into the deaths of 29 primates at
"Primates are dying in the labs of the University of
Wisconsin who are emaciated, have a total lack body fat, and have
suffered from diseases like pneumonia, encephalitis or meningitis. These
monkeys have suffered severely at the hands of UW researchers, but the
UW won’t even admit that they have felt any pain," said Michael A.
Budkie, A.H.T., Executive Director of SAEN.
The complaint is the result of investigations performed to produce a
national report on primate experimentation: "The Primate
Experimentation Scandal, 2003," which was compiled by Cincinnati-based
The report (available at
www.all-creatures.org/saen/event-nplw-2003.html), is based on
internal government documents, and reveals U.S. labs confine nearly
100,000 primates per year at an estimated cost to the federal government
of more than one-half billion dollars ($530,000,000).