This year, we have something to celebrate as we commemorate World Week for Animals in Laboratories. After 30 years of pressure from PETA and other organizations, Harvard Medical School’s New England Primate Research Center is shutting its doors. This milestone victory proves that even the mightiest can fall—or do better, move on, or modernize. And it illustrates why it is crucial that animal advocates keep working to end the suffering of animals in laboratories.
One group of animal rights advocates in Italy made headlines this week when they occupied a laboratory at the University of Milan and removed many of the mice and rabbits who were caged there. Closer to home, there are numerous easy actions that any of us can take to help animals in laboratories:
- Update your Facebook cover photo to a photo of an animal in a laboratory (try one of these), and ask your Facebook friends to purchase only cruelty-free cosmetics.
- Make it harder for experimenters to get their hands on animals by asking Air France, one of the few airlines that will still transport primates to be used in experiments, to stop profiting from cruelty.
- Be sure to purchase only cosmetics, personal-care products, and household cleaners from companies that don’t test on animals. PETA’s cruelty-free shopping guide makes it easy. And send companies that do test on animals a quick e-mail to let them know why you won’t be purchasing from them.
- Check this map to see if your state, city, school district, or college has a policy allowing students to opt out of cruel animal dissection. If so, be sure to request a humane teaching method when the time comes. If there isn’t a policy yet, get one created to save the lives of some of the millions of animals killed for dissection every year.
- Join PETA’s e-mail drive to get the deadly cat laboratories at the University of Wisconsin–Madison shut down.
Please tweet this post to encourage your Twitter followers to get active for animals in laboratories, too. We can win the campaign to end the use of animals in laboratories, and we must. Millions of animals need us to.