Tuesday, March 29, 2005

PLEASE WRITE TO THE REGENTS about 34 Monkeys Abused at CU Medical Center

I am asking for the help of everyone with emailing the CU Regents re: the CU
34. It can be a short or long email, whatever you have time for and feel
inclined to write.

Their addresses are:

_Peter.Steinhauer@colorado.edu_ (mailto:Peter.Steinhauer@colorado.edu) ,
_regent.carlisle@colorado.edu_ (mailto:regent.carlisle@colorado.edu) ,
_regent.hayes@colorado.edu_ (mailto:regent.hayes@colorado.edu) , _carrigan@colorado.edu_
(mailto:carrigan@colorado.edu) , _tom.lucero@colorado.edu_
(mailto:tom.lucero@colorado.edu) , _regent.bosley@colorado.edu_
(mailto:regent.bosley@colorado.edu) , _jerryrutledge@adelphia.net_ (mailto:jerryrutledge@adelphia.net) ,
_regent.schauer@colorado.edu_ (mailto:regent.schauer@colorado.edu) ,
_gail.schwartz@colorado.edu_ (mailto:gail.schwartz@colorado.edu)

I have included the text of my short presentation to the Regents so you have
an idea what we have asked for. We have now presented 7,400 signatures
asking for the release of the monkeys.

In addition to the text below, we presented information about the 100
year-old facilities in which the monkeys live, including documentation that the
temperature has gone as high as 106 degrees in their facilities. Interestingly,
in response to information about the 100 year-old basement, Dr. Sladek said,
that HE had been raised in a 100 year-old building and the PRSIDENT OF THE
US lives in a 100 y/o building. That's the best he could come up with!

Here is what I said:

My name is Rita Anderson. I’m with the Committee for Research
Accountability and the “FREE THE CU 34" campaign.

Thank you for allowing me to speak today. Thanks especially to Tom Lucero
for making this possible.

For over a year and a half I have attempted to discuss with CU officials our
concerns regarding research involving primates at CU’s Health Sciences
Center in Denver (which I will refer to as “HSC”).

Phone calls, emails and visits to President Hoffman’s office have been
largely ignored. I have also been told that “no amount of effort” will bring
about a meeting with Dr. Sladek, the Vice-Chancellor for Research, because I
have “caused the University problems”. My crimes were bringing our concerns
to the press and the public, and holding a peaceful candlelight vigil for the
monkeys.

Research - I would like to address some of the past and current activities
at HSC and pose related questions to you.

Maternal Separation - Why was CU’s Mark Laudenslager allowed to conduct
redundant maternal separation experiments on macaque monkeys for 17 years, at a
cost of millions of dollars in federal funding? This was similar to research
that was done 40 to 50 years ago.
Exit Strategy - Why were the monkeys kept at HSC at the end of this project
in October 2003 and where did the money come from to pay for their care?
According to the Boulder Daily Camera, an “exit strategy” had been an explicit
condition of the approval of this project by the Institutional Animal Care
and Use Committee (IACUC). It was agreed that at the end of the research, the
remaining monkeys would be transferred elsewhere and not be kept at the
expense of the University of Colorado.

Embryo Harvesting - Did Dr. Sladek keep them specifically to breed them and “
harvest” their embryos for sale? Although his protocol had reportedly been
denied by the IACUC, documents obtained from HSC indicate he went ahead with
the “embryo harvesting”, which means repeated surgical abortions.

This is not medical research. This is commerce.

IACUC Minutes: Why is no one allowed to see unredacted IACUC Minutes of the
meetings in which the Laudenslager exit strategy was discussed and the
Sladek embryo protocol was denied? Former Regent Jim Martin was told by
Chancellor Shore that even he could not view the unredacted Minutes. Why does CU
allow such secrecy?

IACUC Members - Did Dr. Sladek purposely structure the IACUC in his favor
and only allow members who agreed with him? The Boulder Daily Camera reported
that after dissension over the exit strategy and the embryo protocol, Dr.
Sladek fired then-veterinarian Dr. Ron Banks and refused to reappoint a
committee member because they disagreed with him. Some other members resigned.

The USDA is currently investigating alleged violations of the Animal Welfare
Act because of the firing of Dr. Banks. Why is an internal investigation
not being conducted?

Alcohol Study - Why was Dr. Laudenslager allowed to embark upon yet another
very dubious project, to determine if poor mothering in bonnet macaque monkeys
is a contributing factor in adolescent monkey alcoholism? How can this
possibly relate to human alcoholism? Human adolescents are subjected to many
environmental factors, including television, peer pressure, and alcohol
advertisements.

Do you believe this experiment, which began in July 2004, will help solve
alcohol problems on CU’s campus or save student lives? In times of declining
enrollment at CU, how many students will be attracted to a school where they
conduct alcohol research on monkeys?

What is the issue? - The issue is not whether you believe that research
using animals is valid or is not valid. The issue is: Why is this kind of
questionable “research” being conducted on monkeys at CU when it does nothing
more than give a couple of researchers a job and a paycheck?

Changes must be made - It is time to begin a new era of campus-wide honesty
and openness. It is time for accountability to students, parents, alumni,
taxpayers and other supporters of the University.

What do we want? We want action, we want answers and we want an end to the
secrecy at CU. We will remain vigilant for as long as it takes. We ask:

1) That unredacted IACUC Minutes be made available to citizens through the
Colorado Open Records Act.

2) That a thorough investigation be conducted regarding all matters outlined
in my December 8, 2004 letter to you, and that the results of the
investigation be made public.

3) That Mark Laudenslager’s current alcohol study be terminated immediately.
We believe it to be a waste of taxpayer money and an embarrassment to the
University.

That instead, a clinical study be conducted with adolescent humans
regarding binge drinking and alcoholism, and that CU pursue ways of bringing about
changes in this urgent and important matter.

4) That all primates at HSC be retired to a waiting sanctuary at no cost to
citizens. These monkeys live in a 100 year-old basement that does not even
meet the basic requirements of the US Department of Agriculture. Many have
been there for their entire lives, some nearly 20 years.

In order to show the world what an outstanding and upstanding educational
facility we can have at CU, we need your help.

Thank you.

Very truly yours,


Rita L. Anderson
Committee for Research Accountability,
A Project of In Defense of Animals
(303) 527-3372 or (303) 618-3227 (cell)
-------------

Thanks to everyone. The monkeys need you now more than ever. Please write
the Regents now and again later if you don't receive a response.

Rita

No comments:

Search for More Content

Custom Search
Bookmark and Share

Past Articles