Animal rights group files federal complaint over deaths of 2 monkeys at primate center
Media Coverage About SAEN Stop Animal Exploitation Now



Dr. Robert Gibbens
Director, Western Region, USDA
(970) 494-7478
[email protected] 
[email protected]


Please levy the MAXIMUM FINE against Oregon Health & Science University for their blatant disregard of the Animal Welfare Act when their negligence killed two monkeys in a cage-washing machine. Their behavior should NOT be tolerated and MUST be punished to the fullest extent of the law.


Animal rights group files federal complaint over deaths of 2 monkeys at primate center

From, September 2, 2020

The accidental deaths of two more monkeys at an Oregon Health & Science University-operated research facility in Hillsboro has prompted an animal rights group to file a federal complaint.

On Aug. 13, an animal care technician at the Oregon National Primate Research Center placed a 6-foot-tall rack of monkey cages into a cage-washing machine and turned it on without realizing there were still two monkeys locked in one of the top cages, OHSU said in a statement Aug. 28.

“The technician quickly realized the error and immediately called veterinary staff for help, but one monkey died and the second was later humanely euthanized,” read OHSU’s statement. “All cage washing immediately ceased and the director of animal care and use, Vickie Jarrell, Ph.D., was notified.”

Jarrell reported the deaths of the adult rhesus macaques to two federal regulatory agencies overseeing animal research as soon as she learned of the incident, according to the OHSU statement titled “OHSU grieves loss of two nonhuman primates.” She also contacted an international organization that offers voluntary accreditation for animal research programs.

The incident has drawn the ire of the Ohio-based animal rights advocacy group Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!, which filed a complaint Aug. 30 with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s division overseeing animal welfare.

“(This) device sterilizes with heat, meaning these monkeys were boiled alive,” the group said in a statement, referring to the cage-washing machine where the monkeys were killed.

The incident violates the Animal Welfare Act, of which OHSU has been cited in violation 19 times in the last four years, according to the complaint.

OHSU chief research officer Peter Barr-Gillespie plans to establish “an independent, external review committee to more broadly examine hiring, training, safety and operations in animal care” at the research center, OHSU said.

The university’s institutional animal care and use committee is also conducting an internal investigation, which will take several weeks to complete, OHSU said.
In the complaint, SAEN also highlighted an OHSU report discussing an incident this January in which a monkey was injured after becoming trapped in a drain opening, left uncovered by OHSU staff.

The Primate Research Center houses nearly 5,000 monkeys, many of which are part of a breeding colony that supports National Institutes of Health-funded research on human and animal health, including research into potential vaccines and treatments for COVID-19, OHSU said. 

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