The start of a new year brings with it the opportunity to re-evaluate what matters most to us and resolve to make an even stronger commitment to those things. We at NAVS hope that one of your resolutions for this new year is to continue to be a strong advocate for animals.
As we enter 2019, we are faced with the following facts:
- Public support for animal experimentation is at an all-time low. The most recent Pew survey results indicate that the majority of Americans now oppose the use of animals in scientific research.
- Yet, each year, millions of animals are experimented on in the name of science.
A recent article in Laboratory Equipment magazine recognized what the implication of this may be: “If public support for animal research continues to decline, the ability to use animals in research will be negatively impacted…”
However, the sentence continued, “…and so will modern medical advancements.” And that is where we disagree with the animal research community.
With the growing recognition that data produced in animal models may be irrelevant for humans, it is more likely that the rate of scientific discoveries would actually be enhanced by the use of more modern human-relevant cell- and computer-based approaches.
This year, by resolving to be strong animal advocates, we must ensure that our voices are heard by those who can enact change: regulatory agencies, funding agencies, corporations, policy makers and others. We need to continue to strongly advocate that our taxpayer dollars not be spent on animal experiments. Instead, efforts should be focused on the development and use of innovative, human-relevant models that can replace the use of animal models—such as those that NAVS supports through the International Foundation for Ethical Research. Just because researchers can use animals in their experiments does not mean they should.
As the year progresses, we promise to keep you informed of opportunities to comment on animal-related issues both through Science First and through our free, weekly “Take Action Thursday” email alert, which summarizes important federal and state initiatives affecting animals. There are also opportunities to take action through NAVS’ Advocacy Center.
Let’s make 2019 count for animals. Make a New Year’s resolution to be an even stronger animal advocate than you are today.
Please also consider making a donation to NAVS today. Your gift will fund smarter science, promote innovative science education and assist animals in need.