Activists protest Bristol Uni’s involvement in animal experimentation

They lit up a motor way bridge in St Pauls

Activists from the Animal Justice Project have publicly called out Bristol University for partaking in experimentation on animals.

A group of 30 campaigners lit up a motorway bridge in St Paul’s, Bristol with the words “Bristol Uni Kills Animals”, in protest at the lack of transparency from the university in regards to their treatment of animals in research.

According to Claire Palmer, the international director of Animal Justice Project “we organised the Light Brigade- the first of its kind in the UK- in solidarity with campaigns all over the world who are carrying out actions a global day of action called “International Britches Day”. Britches was a macaque monkey who was rescued from a U.S. laboratory in 1985, and who has become synonymous with efforts to end animal experiments.”

“Tonight we lit up a bridge in Bristol- the first of its kind in the Uniter Kingdom- against animal research at Bristol University. Around 30 campaigners held signs projecting a loud and clear message to the university, passers by and motorists, that there continues to be opposition to the university’s using and killing of animals for experiments. This is the second awareness event Animal Justice Project has carried out on Bristol University specifically.”

According to the group, who are running this as part of the campaign “campus without cruelty” British universities undertake two million animal experiments a year. Given that this is where 50% of all animal experimentation takes place, it is unsurprising that they are targeting universities.

Moreover, as “most (around 90%) of the research conducted in the UK and especially at universities is basic research which, by definition, is curiosity driven and does not need to produce a result.” the implication is that there is little ethical justification for these experiments.

They are focusing on Bristol University because of “the cruel experiments that they continue to carry out on animals” and “because of its failure to, over several years, to respond to Freedom of Information requests on the numbers and types of animals there”. Indeed, it seems that the university is not willing to engage, as “the ethical review process at Bristol is well hidden from public view.

Experimentation on animals at Bristol has been conducted on animals of multiple species for decades, including cats. One animal protection charity even submitted a report to the Home Office in 2014, citing several cases of animal cruelty towards cats used in research trials at the university.

In response to the demonstration, Bristol University said to Bristol 24/7 that ‘high standards of care and welfare are always adhered to and scientists are committed to reducing the number of animals used in experiments’.