On the “even the little guy sometimes gets a break” front, we recently received news that nine monkeys had escaped from the Oregon National Primate Research Center (ONPRC). The monkeys apparently made a break for it when a laboratory worker left their outdoor cage unsecured (great idea—lab workers reading this please take note). Sadly, all the monkeys were eventually captured, but freedom tasted good while it lasted, didn’t it, guys?
Perhaps those monkeys were reading The PETA Files? Just last month, we reported that ONPRC had been cited for three violations of the Animal Welfare Act and slapped with a formal warning from the USDA, which told ONPRC that if it didn’t shape up, it could face civil or criminal penalties. This after PETA repeatedly brought to the USDA’s attention abuses such as botched surgeries, the forced separation of infant monkeys from their mothers, and the deaths of monkeys who had been denied veterinary care. PETA also told the USDA about how monkeys at ONPRC were forced to eat food out of waste-filled trays, blasted with high-pressure hoses in their cages, and much more.
Even though we were rooting for the escaped monkeys to catch a freight train out of there forever, we have filed yet another complaint with the USDA. We pointed out that the USDA had told ONPRC that if it screwed up again, it was going to be in serious trouble. So, USDA, please stand by your word. ONPRC has been given more than enough opportunities to clean up its act, and it has failed. If only the 4,000 monkeys who are imprisoned at ONPRC could receive as many “second chances.” There is nothing good in their future, we fear.
Written by Alisa Mullins