Animal Welfare Act Violations at Ivy League Universities

The Physicians Committee

Animal Welfare Act Violations at Ivy League Universities

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A report from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
September 2011


Findings | Review Process | Detailed Results | Discussion | Recommendations | References



The only way to completely prevent continued frequent and severe violations of the Animal Welfare Act is to replace animal experiments with nonanimal experimental methods. Ivy League schools should commit to ending their use of animals and focus on effective replacement methods. In addition to being the humane solution, this would lead to more applicable and reliable approaches to the study of human diseases.

While efforts to end animal experiments proceed, Ivy League universities and other research institutions must be held accountable for these frequent, repeat, and severe Animal Welfare Act violations. Although APHIS is the institution primarily tasked with policing animal welfare, its inability to do so effectively is well-documented. PCRM recommends that APHIS formally sanction the Ivy League schools for their blatant research misconduct, levy the heaviest penalties allowed by law, and perform more frequent and thorough inspections of these repeat offenders.

In addition to greater oversight by APHIS, PCRM requests that NIH exercise its authority over research funding by suspending all research funding to these Ivy League institutions that repeatedly fail to meet Animal Welfare Act standards. Though APHIS’s infrequent and meager fines may be written off as a minor cost of doing business by the heavily funded Ivy League schools, those schools would take heed if the many millions of NIH dollars they expect each year were revoked.