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Cruelty in NZ animal laboratories getting worse

Media Release: National Anti Vivisection Campaign

15 July 2008

Cruelty in NZ animal laboratories getting worse

Anti Vivisection campaigners say the situation for animals in laboratories is getting worse, not better. This follows the release of the Ministry of Agriculture annual report into animal experimentation today.

The report shows that 246,667 animals were used in research and testing last year. 16,608 of those experienced very severe suffering and a further 3217 experienced severe suffering. That's a 47 percent increase in the numbers of animals who experienced severe suffering.

National Anti Vivisection Campaign Spokesperson Mark Eden says

"Every time they release the vivisection statistics they claim they are committed to reducing the cruelty but things just get worse and worse. The government keeps saying we have the strictest animal research regulations in the world but it's simply not true".

"Part Six of the animal welfare act exempts researchers from prosecution as long as they fill in the right forms. The Animal Ethics Committees that approve experiments are made up mostly of researchers, they meet in secret and the public are not allowed to know who these people are.

The regulators claim that experiments involving severe suffering must have a strong "cost-benefit justification" but we are expected to take their word for it because the supposed justifications are kept secret. Why should we trust anything they say?"

ENDS

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