For Immediate Release:
January 17, 2024
Tasgola Bruner 202-483-7382
New Orleans – PETA is calling for investigations by federal and state authorities after a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) report showed that the primate research center at Tulane University is keeping hundreds of monkeys in squalid, unprotected outdoor enclosures filled with trash and rat and goose feces in violation of the federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA) and in apparent violation of state and municipal cruelty-to-animals laws.
A Rhesus macaque monkey. Credit: © iStock.com/EcoPic
“With the millions of taxpayer dollars Tulane rakes in every year, you’d think it could protect monkeys from waste, frostbite, and hypothermia,” says PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo. “PETA is calling on local and federal authorities to take immediate action.”
While the USDA issued citations to Tulane over its findings, those don’t insulate the school from liability under state law. In its letter to the Louisiana SPCA, PETA urges the body to investigate and pursue all appropriate charges against Tulane for apparent violations of state and municipal laws against cruelty to animals.
Federal inspectors have repeatedly found Tulane—which collected more than $110 million from NIH in 2023 alone—in violation of the AWA. Last year, a long-tailed macaque suffocated and died after her head became trapped between a metal bar and the ceiling of a cage. In an earlier incident, a monkey died after being forgotten for nearly 22 hours in a vehicle.