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Commitment to reducing animal testing needed

Green Party calls on Government to demonstrate commitment to reducing animal testing

The failure of the Primary Production Committee to include any measures to address public concerns around unnecessary animal testing in the Animal Welfare Amendment Bill is extremely disappointing, said the Green Party today.

The Animal Welfare Amendment Bill, as reported back from the Select Committee, fails to include any measures to protect animals from unnecessary animal testing.

“The Green Party put in two very simple amendments on animal testing to address public concerns,” Green Party Animal Welfare spokesperson Mojo Mathers said today.

“The first is to ban animal testing of cosmetics in New Zealand and the other is to reduce the number of animals used in testing and research by requiring suitable alternatives to be used where these exist.

“Disappointingly, despite a large proportion of submissions seeking limitations on animal testing, both amendments were rejected by the National members of the select committee, on the grounds that they needed more time to consider these.

“As we have seen with the Psychoactive Substances bill, there is significant public concern about the high levels of pain and suffering that animals go through when they are subjected to unnecessary animal testing.

“There is also increasing awareness that many animal tests can be replaced by modern testing methods that do not use animals.

“By not adopting a ban on animal testing of cosmetics, the Government have chosen to ignore overwhelming public opinion.”

Polls show that nearly 90% of people want to see animal testing of cosmetics ruled out in this country. Banning cosmetics testing would bring New Zealand in line with other countries, including, India, Israel and all 28 countries of the EU that have recently done the same.

“The National Government and John Key in particular, took pride in excluding animal testing in the Psychoactive Substances Act,” said Ms Mathers.

“However, National is failing animals by not supporting a ban on animal testing of cosmetics.

“There are thousands of cosmetics available that we have safety data for.

“Allowing animal suffering to occur for the sake of a new shade of lipstick is unethical and National needs to step up and demonstrate a principled position.

“We are disappointed that the Select Committee did not adopt our amendments to ban animal testing of cosmetics and reduce unnecessary animal testing.

“There is still time for National to step up and adopt our amendments before the Bill is passed,” said Ms Mathers.

ends

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