For Immediate Release:
August 16, 2021
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
Portland, Ore. – PETA has just filed to add claims of unlawful police monitoring to its lawsuit against Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU), which already seeks to hold OHSU accountable for intentionally deleting videos of the school’s alcohol experiments on prairie voles. PETA filed a motion with the Multnomah County Circuit Court today to add these new claims. A copy of the group’s proposed amended complaint is available here.
While litigating the lawsuit, PETA discovered that at least three OHSU police officers, including the police chief, receive near-daily intelligence-style updates on PETA’s activities from a company called Information Network Associates (INA). Oregon law prohibits law-enforcement agencies from collecting such information unless it directly relates to a criminal investigation, which, PETA notes, OHSU’s surveillance does not. Among other “threat” updates, INA has told OHSU about PETA’s blog posts and social media activity.
“Records show that even as OHSU has apparently been hiding its own videos about pointless alcohol experiments on animals, it has been violating PETA’s rights,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “PETA is seeking to have the court stop the school’s bizarre surveillance campaign and hold it accountable for its anti-PETA bias.”
PETA previously expanded the lawsuit to include First Amendment and state equal protection claims after learning that OHSU experimenters apparently deleted videos of experiments in order to ensure that they would not “fall into the wrong hands.” OHSU then misled PETA about the videos’ existence for months.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.