Target: U.S. Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard
Goal: Close a laboratory that tortures monkeys to measure anxiety and depression
Members of Congress have asked the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to investigate an NIH lab in Poolesville, Maryland that performs psychological experiments on monkeys. For the past 30 years, the majority of these procedures have involved intentionally causing significant amounts of distress in the animals in order to gauge their anxiety or depression. A lab whose methodologies are so questionable that they warrant a congressional investigation must be shut down immediately.
The letter issued by four members of Congress comes largely in response to a campaign by PETA that ran more than 250 ads in Washington, D.C. metro trains and stations, including the NIH station, and in major newspapers. PETA informed the public that researchers at the lab were spending millions of taxpayer dollars to traumatize baby monkeys by separating them from their mothers at a young age, inducing anxiety by using loud noises and fake snakes, and addicting them to alcohol. Ultimately, the campaign resulted in a huge public outcry of more than 150,000 emails and phone calls to both NIH and Congress.
The lab’s website states that it investigates various aspects of monkey behavior. This includes how behavior changes when a monkey is raised in different environments and monitoring their resultant long-term stress levels. In their letter, U.S. representatives Lucille Roybal-Allard (D–CA), Dina Titus (D–NV), Sam Farr (D–CA), and Eliot Engel (D–NY) requested a bioethical review of the lab by February 2015.
In response to the investigation, Justin Goodman, PETA’s director of laboratory investigations, said the experiments “have never improved human health and are superseded by modern nonanimal research methods that can actually identify the causes of mental illness in people and how to treat it.”
Please take a moment to sign the petition below and demand that Congress shut down the laboratory, which has devoted 30 years of research to torturing animals through methodologies that have contributed little to nothing to human health.
Dear Congresswoman Roybal-Allard,
After an overwhelming public outcry in response to a campaign run by PETA, you, along with three other members of Congress, have asked the NIH to investigate a lab in Poolesville, Maryland that performs psychological experiments on monkeys. These experiments are torturous in order to induce anxiety and depress, and often include scaring them, taking them from their mother at a young age, and making them dependent on alcohol.
Please close down this laboratory immediately. Not only are these kinds of experiments outdated and unnecessary, but they have also contributed little to human health. We cannot continue to torture animals in the name of science.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: arcticproductions via Flickr