Texas Legislator Co-Sponsors Bill to Ban NIH Funding of Cruel Foreign Animal Experiments

For Immediate Release:
July 8, 2024

Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382

El Paso, Texas

U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar (D-Texas-16) has signed on as a cosponsor of the bipartisan H.R. 4757, Cease Animal Research Grants Overseas (CARGO) Act, which would bar the National Institutes of Health (NIH) from funding animal tests in foreign laboratories. This follows PETA’s 18-month investigation into U.S.-funded animal experimenters in Colombia that led to the shutdown of two animal laboratories.

Between 2011 and 2021, NIH gave approximately $2.2 billion in taxpayer money to 200 foreign organizations to fund 1,357 grants and contracts involving experiments on animals. The money went to 45 countries, including China, Colombia, and Russia. The CARGO Act would terminate these U.S. government giveaways, saving the lives of countless animals who would have otherwise been victimized in experiments.

NIH has funded foreign laboratories in which experimenters addict dogs to opioids and force them to go through withdrawal, cause strokes in monkeys, remove mice’s eyes, infect bats with coronaviruses—potentially setting the stage for the next pandemic—feed amphetamines and alcohol to mice, force-feed toxic substances to beagles, and more.

“I’m a strong supporter of accountability, transparency, and oversight,” says Rep. Escobar. “The CARGO Act is a commonsense bill that will address the multiple gaps found in the process to fund and supervise foreign laboratories that experiment on animals, and I invite my colleagues in Congress to cosponsor it.”

“PETA thanks Rep. Escobar for her strong leadership,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “It’s not often you get a bill that protects animals, science, and U.S. taxpayers all at once. The CARGO Act does just that.”

The bipartisan bill was introduced by Rep. Dina Titus (D-Nev.-01) and Rep. Troy Nehls (R-Texas-22) and has so far been cosponsored by Reps. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.-01), Brian Mast (R-Fla.-21), Nancy Mace (R-S.C.-01), Don Davis (D-N.C.-01), Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pa.-14), Zachary Nunn (R-Iowa-03), Dean Phillips (D-Minn.-03), Jill Tokuda (D-Hawaii-02), Susan Wild (D-Pa.-07), Greg Steube (R-Fla.-17), Madeleine Dean (D-Pa.-04), Young Kim (R-Calif.-40), Joe Neguse (D-Colo.-02), Lance Gooden (R-Texas-05), Chris Deluzio (D-Pa.-17), Nicole Malliotakis (R-N.Y.-11), Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.-18), Jen Kiggans (R-Va.-02), Bill Posey (R-Fla.-08), and Dwight Evans (D-Pa.-03) and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.-At Large).

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to experiment on”—points out that Every Animal Is Someone and offers free Empathy Kits for people who need a lesson in kindness. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on XFacebook, or Instagram.

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