Animal Aid

Campaigners take to the streets to expose charity-funded vivisection

Posted 6 June 2012

This Saturday (June 9) is Animal Aid’s Victims of Charity Day of Action, aimed at exposing the secretive world of charity-funded medical research on animals. Campaigners across the country will hold information stalls to raise awareness of the involvement of medical research charities in vivisection, and urge people to withdraw their financial support from those charities until they change their policies.

In January, Animal Aid wrote to the four charities that are the focus of our Victims of Charity campaign – Cancer Research UK, the British Heart Foundation, Parkinson’s UK and the Alzheimer’s Society – challenging them to a public debate on the scientific and moral issues relating to their funding of animal experiments. None responded. We wrote to them again in April, only to be told by the Association of Medical Research Charities that none of the charities is willing to debate the issue.

Our scientific report, Victims of Charity, describes experiments in which charity-funded researchers deliberately damaged monkeys’ brains with toxic chemicals, systematically destroyed the hearts of dogs, and injected mice with cancerous tissue. The report was co-written by hospital doctor and university lecturer Dr Adrian Stallwood, and veterinary surgeon Dr Andre Menache. They challenge the claim that animal research is justified because it produces significant health benefits for people, and conclude that animal-based research into cancer, dementia, heart disease and Parkinson’s has been ‘a wasteful and futile quest’- one that has failed to advance the cause of human medicine.

Says Animal Aid Director, Andrew Tyler

‘A 2011 opinion poll revealed that most people object to the money they donate to medical charities being used for animal experimentation. That such charities continue to receive huge sums from the public is a clear indication of the lengths to which the charities go in order to conceal the fact that they bankroll so much animal suffering. We all want productive research for terrible human conditions such as heart disease, cancer and dementia. But the evidence clearly demonstrates that, as well as being cruel, disease research using animals does not deliver. There are many excellent non-animal methods for researching human illness. That is where the future lies, and that is where the research charities should be putting the public’s money.’

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