Don’t hold your breath. The Washington National Primate Research Center (WaNPRC) has not released video footage from inside its secretive baby monkey laboratory. Nor does it offer tours to the public. Reportedly, even the staff is prohibited from taking videos or photos.
So PETA has released a compelling new video compiled from footage taken inside other national primate research centers and government laboratories that engage in the same practices. Check out the video below to see how baby monkeys suffer when used in experiments:
What Do Monkeys Endure Inside the WaNPRC?
More than 50 years ago, in 1970, experimenters at the University of Washington set up a basement laboratory where they could copy the experiments of the infamous Harry Harlow.
They subjected baby monkeys to so-called “social deprivation rearing.” That’s a scientific way of saying that they took infant monkeys away from their mothers and warehoused them, all alone, to see how mentally, emotionally, socially, and physically disturbed they became.
To this day, experimenters at the Infant Primate Research Laboratory at the WaNPRC routinely separate newborn monkeys from their mothers.
The newborns are confined to an incubator for their first few days of life. Then, they’re moved to a small cage in which they’re held alone. Experimenters use a hanging cloth to replace their real mother. Infant monkeys have been condemned to various forms of isolation and raised in complete darkness for weeks. They’ve been used in experiments on drug addiction, fetal alcohol disorders, brain damage, and more.
Former primate scientist Dr. John Gluck, who is featured in the video, says it plainly:
Whether it is called mother-infant separation, social deprivation, or the more pleasant sounding “nursery rearing,” these manipulations cause such drastic damage across many behavioral and physiological systems that the work should not be repeated.
I wish now that I had spoken up when the facility was started.