PETA has submitted a shareholder resolution calling on Eli Lilly to enforce its published animal-welfare policy and ensure that its hired laboratories aren’t abusing animals. PETA owns stock in Eli Lilly and a number of other companies in order to advocate for animals directly to shareholders.
Eli Lilly’s animal-welfare policy requires that both it and its contract laboratories ensure that animals are “treated humanely, with pain or distress eliminated or minimized.” But a recent PETA eyewitness investigation of contract laboratory Liberty Research, Inc., with which Eli Lilly has done business, revealed that dogs and cats were held in squalid conditions, denied adequate veterinary care, confined with stressed animals who injured them, and killed in slow and painful ways. Workers drilled holes into the heads of young beagles but failed to provide them with adequate pain relief. Some dogs blinked and whimpered during the procedure.
“By doing business with Liberty Research, Eli Lilly is implicated in the miserable lives and excruciating deaths of these dogs and cats,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “PETA is calling on Eli Lilly to enforce its own animal-welfare policy by reviewing federal records, conducting comprehensive site inspections, and ensuring that its contract laboratories aren’t neglecting or mistreating animals.”
Eli Lilly previously contracted with Covance, where workers struck primates and threw them against cages, and Professional Laboratory and Research Services, which shuttered after a PETA exposé revealed that sick and injured dogs, cats, and rabbits suffered without adequate veterinary care and that staff kicked and threw dogs animals and slammed cats into cages.
Felony cruelty indictments were issued against workers for their abuse and neglect of the animals.
It’s up to all of us, shareholder or not, to keep a vigilant eye on this industry plagued with abuse and protect the animals it renders most defenseless.