World Laboratory Animal Liberation Week
World Laboratory Animal Liberation Week is the week that surrounds April 24th every year - It's a national week of protests, media events, etc. at laboratories to stop testing and research on animals
Students protest animal testing at UT
By Adrienne Lee
27 April 2005
Media Credit: Kyohei Yoshioka
Amanda Belkin, Helen Schreiner, Kathryn Mueller and Robert Liu protest animal testing atop the bridge overlooking 26th Street on Tuesday.
Students Against Cruelty to Animals marched down Speedway on Tuesday protesting the University's use of animals in research as part of World Week for Animals in Labs.
Eleven students walked passed Dean Keeton Street, carrying signs reading "Animals Suffer Here" and "Animal Research is a Scientific Fraud." Stopping in front of the Animal Resources Center, they chanted "Hey, ARC, what do you say? How many animals did you kill today?" and "One, two, three, four, open up the cage doors. Five, six, seven, eight, free the animals; liberate!"
ARC is the target of SACA's four-day show of opposition to animal testing. Kathryn Mueller, an English senior and SACA member, said the group's purpose this week is to make people aware of the "unnecessary suffering that goes on behind closed doors."
Mueller said SACA believes ARC is cruel to the animals kept there for research.
"They are not given their basic nurturing needs," she said.
However, ARC Director Jerry Fineg said the center is not cruel to the animals housed there. He said he sees SACA's protest as a difference of opinion between the two organizations.
"We feel that as long as our researchers are in compliance with the regulations in place, it is acceptable to complete our endeavors," Fineg said.
Lisa Leiden, director for the UT Institutional Animal Use and Care Committee, which oversees ARC practices, said ARC is in compliance with current animal regulations, and to their knowledge, no cruelty is being used.
Leiden and Fineg recognized the students' right to protest, and Leiden said some of the topics SACA questions are the same ones the committee does when reviewing ARC.
When the protestors reached the ARC building, they shouted at the building, "Puppy killers, go home!" SACA was referring to ARC's use of beagles in research about four years ago. According to SACA, the beagles were killed for their organs to be sold to a pharmaceutical company. ARC, Fineg said, used the beagles for their tissue, and they were euthanized. One of the dogs, Stampy, was saved when ARC gave it to SACA.
Last year, the American Anti-Vivisection Society filed suit opposing a UT patent to allow medical testing on beagles. In a previous Texan article, an ARC representative said the center obtained the patent but did not go through with any of the experiments. The University cancelled the patent last spring.
Group member and journalism sophomore Katherine Curtis said she felt she was compromising her belief in animal rights by going to the University, because it allows research on animals. SACA will continue with two candlelight vigils, a march and a demonstration on the West Mall.
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