Tell Your U.S. Senator to Cosponsor the CARGO Act

UN LAB Middleware Label: Title Ends

U.S. Reps. Dina Titus (D-Nev.-01) and Troy Nehls (R-Texas-22) have introduced a bill that would stop foreign laboratories from getting U.S. tax money to experiment on animals. 🎉

The Cease Animal Research Grants Overseas (CARGO) Act (HR 4757) would prevent the National Institutes of Health (NIH) from funding any foreign group for experiments on animals.

This bill needs to be introduced in the Senate now. Please urge your Republican U.S. senator to introduce the CARGO Act today!

Why We Need This Bill

NIH has already wasted billions of taxpayer dollars funding overseas experiments that harm and kill animals. 😰 These experiments include the following:

  • Getting dogs addicted to opioids and rats addicted to cocaine

  • Causing strokes in monkeys and infecting them with tuberculosis and viruses similar to HIV

  • Blinding monkeys

  • Infecting pigs, hamsters, and snails with parasites

  • Harming rabbits’ vocal cords and spinal cords

  • Removing mice’s eyes

  • Tormenting bats to make them a “model” to study coronaviruses

  • Infecting bats with nasty viruses (Sounds like a recipe for the next pandemic, amirite?)

  • Restraining conscious rats, implanting over 500 electrodes in their brains, and forcing them to live in this condition for months

  • Forcing mice to get drunk and ingest high doses of amphetamines

  • Infecting mice with gonorrhea

  • Electroshocking rats

  • Giving baby rats seizures

Porcine model of neurocysticercosis by intracarotid injection of Taenia solium oncospheres: Dose assessment, infection outcomes and serological responses. Gianfranco Arroyo et al., PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 2022. [These pictures are three of nine images on Figure 1.] | Creative Commons—Attribution 4.0 International—CC BY4.0

Brains of pigs in an NIH-funded foreign lab show signs of infection by pork tapeworm, a parasite injected by the experimenters into the animals’ carotids.

None of these animals deserved to suffer, and the CARGO Act would make sure the U.S. gov stops funding such horrors. 🙅 The bill would also do three critical things to advance animal rights and human health.

  1. Support better science: Experiments on animals almost never lead to treatments for humans, and 95% of new medications that test effectively on animals end up failing in human trials. 😲

  2. Save money: During the decade ending in 2021, NIH gave about $2.2 billion in taxpayer money to approximately 200 foreign orgs and funded 1,357 grants and contracts involving experiments on animals in 45 countries. 😒

  3. Stop corruption: NIH funds these orgs but doesn’t keep tabs on how they operate or how they spend the money. 😑

Here are some distressing facts about this current situation:

  • Foreign orgs getting less than $750,000 a year—which accounts for about 90% of the grants handed out in the last five years—don’t have to undergo audits by NIH.

  • NIH doesn’t inspect foreign laboratories or set up third-party inspections to make sure that the facilities meet animal welfare standards.

  • NIH provides funding without first verifying that claims in grant applications and progress reports are even true.

  • NIH doesn’t make foreign laboratories have an oversight committee to review proposed experiments, and the agency doesn’t follow up to make sure that these facilities are following laws and regulations.

  • NIH just hands over taxpayer money and trusts foreign orgs to report info about finances, facilities, and animal welfare. 🤨

Case Study: NIH-Funded Colombian Lab

Between 2003 and 2023, NIH gave over $17 million to two orgs in Colombia for experiments on monkeys and mice. 😡 Experiments were suspended following a PETA investigation, and authorities rescued 108 monkeys who had amputations, old fractures, missing teeth and eyes, and other serious health problems. 🐒 😢 City officials closed the facility due to its disgusting and dangerous conditions and rescued 180 mice.

Thanks to our investigation, the heads of the orgs responsible for this misery have come under scrutiny. A Colombian gov agency has already fined them $281,000 after finding them guilty of not having permits to capture monkeys and experiment on them. The agency also found that “animal mistreatment” had been committed, so we hope that the cruelty-to-animals special prosecutor will pursue criminal charges soon. 👏 👏

PETA also learned of allegations that the Columbian orgs were allowing children to serve on their board of directors, had no proper ethics committee, were manipulating data, were mishandling human samples, and followed other super-sus business practices. 🤦

In June 2023, six months after PETA showed NIH evidence of animal abuse and corruption, the agency finally ruled that these orgs couldn’t receive any more funding. This is great progress, but here’s the thing: NIH never should have funded them in the first place. 💁

Functional analysis of injectable substance treatment on surgically injured rabbit vocal folds. Sarah Bouhabel et al., Journal of Voice, 2023. | Creative Commons—Attribution 4.0 International—CC BY4.0

A rabbit is on an operating table in a foreign lab funded by NIH before experimenters exposed their larynx and cut their vocal cords.

What You Can Do

The CARGO Act would stop the flow of money to unaccountable and possibly illegal foreign animal experimenters who operate outside the reach of U.S. law. Please use the form below to urge your Republican U.S. senator/senators introduce the CARGO Act today! (Note: You may not be given the option to contact your legislator because only some states are included in this action.)

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