Help stop EDM from stifling research

8 November 2012

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Category: Communications & media

chart–research–edm–stifling.jpgAnimal rights groups have been busy as of late convincing MPs to sign their new Early Day Motion(EDM). The text of EDM 405 says:

That this House notes the publication of the Statistics of Scientific Procedures on Living Animals 2011 report; expresses concern that 3,710,621 animals were used in scientific procedures in 2011, the highest at any point since the current statistics regime was introduced by the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986; further notes that the increase is contrary to the pledge in the Coalition Programme for Government to `work to reduce the use of animals in scientific research'; is disappointed with the lack of progress being made on this issue; and calls on the Government to publish a strategy on how numbers can be reduced before the end of the current Parliament.

This EDM fails to note that the total number of animals used in research is a reflection on the funding environment, and is not simply chosen at the beginning of the year. The chart shows clearly that while the number of animals has risen by around 40% (2011 – 3.7 million animals used), research and development expenditure in UK bioscience and medicine has more than doubled.

In 2011 most of the rises were due to an increase in the number of fish and fowl used for research – and most of these were for veterinary purposes. Furthermore, the number of primates fell by 47% in 2011.

What can you do?

If you are concerned about the arbitrary nature of these EDMs, find out if your MP signed EDM 405 calling for the numbers to be reduced. If so, then we recommend emailing your MP. Remember to give your address in the email so they know you are a constituent.

Find your MP and their email address here (use their constituency email):