New Report Shows Increasing Support for Nonanimal Research
By Kristie Sullivan, M.P.H.
According to the National Center for Charitable Statistics, there are 41,443 health-related charities in the United States. How does a donor wade through this veritable haystack to find the best ones? How do people identify and support the most important, scientific, and cutting-edge health charities?
Worthwhile charities are sometimes identified by checking financial statements to ensure that donations aren’t wasted. But is that enough?
A new PCRM report shows that a growing number of Americans don’t think so. These donors also want to know whether their contributions are going to support animal experiments or toward more innovative research or programs.
PCRM’s research staff recently analyzed data from three telephone surveys taken over a 10-year period by an independent pollster, Opinion Research Corporation International of Princeton, New Jersey. (The company conducts these surveys on our behalf every few years.) The most recent poll was conducted among a random sample of 1,012 adults, July 18–21, 2005. The results were very encouraging.
The report shows a clear trend toward humane giving, meaning that more donors care about whether their money is used to support animal experiments. Sixty-seven percent of adults polled in July 2005 said they were more likely to donate to a health charity that has a policy of never funding animal experiments than to one that does. That’s up 11 percentage points since 2001 and 16 percentage points since 1996.
The survey also asked, “When donating to a health charity, how important is it that your donation be used for innovative research without animals rather than animal experiments?” Seventy-one percent of respondents said that it was somewhat, very, or extremely important; the proportion of 18- to 24-year-olds so responding was 83 percent.
PCRM members have long been aware that no health charity has to conduct cruel animal experiments to help advance human health. Nonanimal research, including clinical, in vitro, and epidemiological research using the latest computer simulation and imaging techniques is not only more humane, it is also more applicable to human health. The general public now seems to agree.
For a copy of the full report, visit www.HumaneSeal.org.
As the demand for humane giving opportunities grows, so does the list of health charities recognized by PCRM’s Council on Humane Giving. Nearly 250 health charities have been awarded the Humane Charity Seal of Approval. These charities are all working to improve human health—humanely. For a current list of awardees, contact PCRM at 202-686-2210, ext. 306, or visit www.HumaneSeal.org.