Why You Should Support the FACT Act

A May 2018 study has found the National Toxicology Program uses animals in 82% of its tests, “subjecting countless animal to painful procedures with little relevance to human health”.

The National Toxicology Program or NTP is a federal agency within the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and is a partner with Center for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration. NTP is tasked with coordinating studies of substances that could present potential harm to the public. NTP is also supposed to “develop[] and implement[] modern testing technologies that reduce animal use”. NTP’s budget was $131 million in FY 2016.

The report issued by White Coat Waste Project and the New England Anti-Vivisection Society, finds, however, that NTP’s “testing practices …are not keeping pace with technological advances”. The report found that in 48% of NTP’s most common current chemical tests, at least 115,000 animals were used at a cost of $186 million. The number of animals used in all current tests is likely 200,000 at a cost of $250 billion. Less than half (48%) of chemicals currently under assessment by NTP have non animal tests planned; all have animal tests planned.

The most common animal tests involve “administering massive, human irrelevant doses” by “force-feeding, forced inhalation, injection, spiked food and water, and application to their bare skin, including to pregnant animals and their offspring”. Animals “used in these poisoning tests are typically not provided with any pain relief”. In one test on acrylamide, a by-product of roasting coffee and baking and frying starchy foods like French fries and potato chips, NTP gave the chemical to mice and rats in “‘doses 1,000 to 10,000 times higher than the levels people might be exposed to in foods'”. NTP found “‘clear evidence'” acrylamide causes cancer. The National Cancer Institute reports, however, that based on epidemiological studies in humans, there is no consistent evidence the dietary exposure acrylamide causes cancer.

Another pointless, cruel, and costly NTP animal study involved testing cell phone radiation on 3,000 animals over 10 years at a cost of $25 million. The levels of exposure to radiation were more than 10 times that of the highest cell phone use. Even the NTP concluded, “So, these findings should not be directly extrapolated to human cell phone usage”.

The Weekly Standard recently questioned why the government continues to support “cruel, ineffective, and expensive” animal testing when private industry in the case of cosmetics in particular has “abandoned” it.

The report recommends enactment of the bipartisan Federal Accountability in Chemical Testing (FACT), H.R. 816, to improve progress reporting by NTP and other agencies about efforts to reduce animal use in toxicity testing, redirect funds for animal tests to development and use of non animal alternatives, halt animal studies by NTP pending an independent audit, restrict funding for animal testing at all agencies, and increase transparency of the costs of animal testing.

White Coat Waste Project and the New England Anti-Vivisection Society presented the report in a bipartisan briefing hosted by Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) and Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-PA).


Call or send a post card to your U.S. representative and urge him/her to support the FACT Act, H.R. 816 and also restrict funding for animal testing at NTP and other agencies. Find your U.S. representative here.

Call Now to Stop BLM Plan to Sell Wild Horses for Slaughter

Update May 24, 2018: The House of Representatives Appropriations Committee has not yet taken up the BLM FY 2019 budget proposal but is expected to do so in June, 2018. Read Animal Law Coalition’s earlier reports below and continue to contact Committee members listed below and your own U.S. representative and tell them you are calling about the Fiscal Year 2019 BLM spending bill the Appropriations Committee is about to mark up. Tell them to please reject any language that would allow the destruction, sale to slaughter or sterilization of federally protected wild horses and burros and their herds.

Update:May 22, 2018 the House of Representatives Appropriations Committee will take up the BLM FY 2019 budget proposal. The BLM in an April 26, 2018 report has recommended amendments to the Wild Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act, 16 U.S.C. Sec 1331, et seq., that would allow BLM to sell most wild horses and burros removed from the range for slaughter. Most of the wild horses and burros that are not sold would be “euthanized” under BLM’s plan. The report also calls on Congress to allow BLM to manage wild horses and burros on the range as non-reproducing herds through surgical or chemical sterilization. Which means BLM will manage wild horses and burros to extinction.

The BLM claims AML or the appropriate management level of wild horses and burros nationally is 26,715. That is the number of wild horses and burros that existed in 1971 when the Wild Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act was passed because they were fast disappearing from the West!

In Defense of Animals has issued its analysis of the BLM report: “Since 1971, when Congress passed that Act to protect horses and their rangelands, the BLM has removed a shocking 42 percent of the public lands designated for wild horse and burro habitat. At the same time the agency has squandered taxpayer funds on an insane program of chasing down terrified wild horses with helicopters and penning them indefinitely in cruel holding facilities.

“The result is depleted horse herds at levels that are genetically unsustainable. Without supporting evidence, the agency insists that wild horses are rampantly overpopulating, starving, and destroying range ecology, while designating more public lands to ranchers.”

The National Academy of Sciences has challenged BLM’s claims about the AML or number of wild horses and burros that can be supported on the range as “not transparent to stakeholders, supported by scientific information, or amenable to adaptation with new information and environmental and social change.” BLM will not even consider the birth control programs suggested by the Academy let alone its accounting of America’s wild horses and burros.


Find your U.S. representative here. Find key Appropriations Committee members listed below. Call NOW and tell them you are calling about the Fiscal Year 2019 BLM spending bill the Appropriations Committee is about to mark up. Tell them to please reject any language that would allow the destruction, sale to slaughter or sterilization of federally protected wild horses and burros and their herds.


• Rodney P. Frelinghuysen, New Jersey, Chairman- -202-225-5034    fax 202-225-3186 
• Harold Rogers, Kentucky-202-225-4601    fax 202-225-0940 
• Kay Granger, Texas- 202-225-5071   fax 202- 202-225-5683
• Michael K. Simpson, Idaho-202-225-5531   fax 202-225-8216
• John Abney Culberson Texas- 202-225-2571  fax 202-225-4381 
• John R. Carter, Texas- 202-225-3864  fax 202- 225-5886
• Ken Calvert, California- 202-225-1986  fax 202-225-2004 
• Tom Cole, Oklahoma- 202-225-6165   fax 202-225-3512 
• Jaime Herrera Beutler, Washington- 202-225-3536  fax 202-225-3475 
• David G. Valadao, California- 202-225-4695  fax 202-225-3196
• Mark E. Amodei, Nevada- 202-225-6155  fax 202-225-5679
• Chris Stewart, Utah- 202-225-9730  fax 202-225-5629
• David Young, Iowa- 202-225-5476   fax 202-225-3301
• Dan Newhouse, Washington- 202-225-5816  fax 202-225-3251
• Nita M. Lowey, New York- 202-225-6506  fax 202-225-0546
• Marcy Kaptur, Ohio- 202-225-4146  fax 202-225-7711
• José E. Serrano, New York- 202-225-4361   fax 202-225-6001
• David E. Price, North Carolina- 202-225-1784  fax 202-225-2014
• Lucille Roybal-Allard, California- 202-225-1766  fax 202-226-0350
• Barbara Lee, California- 202-225-2661  fax 202-225-9817
• Betty McCollum, Minnesota- 202-225-6631  fax 202-225-1968
• Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Florida- 202-225-7931  fax 202-226-2052
• Henry Cuellar, Texas- 202-225-1640  fax 202-225-1641
• Derek Kilmer, Washington- 202-225-5916  fax 202-226-3575
• Grace Meng, New York- 202-225-2601  fax 202-225-1598
Pete Aguilar, California- 202-225-3201  fax 202-226-6962

Original report February 19, 2018: In the BLM FY 2019 budget proposal the Trump Administration states it plans to sell up to 90,000 wild horses and burros for slaughter in foreign countries.

The Wild Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act, 16 U.S.C. Sec. 1331, et seq. requires the Administration to protect America’s wild horses and burros that are on public lands. Instead, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has systematically over the years used helicopters to round them up, penning them cruelly in costly corrals and leaving herds at near extinct levels. Now BLM wants to sell off these mustangs for slaughter.

For more information read the Unified Statement of more than 80 organizations including Animal Law Coalition.

NY Bill to Slow Trade in Bear Body Parts Goes to Gov

Update June 21, 2011A.B. 6291A/S.B. 3858-B has passed the new York state Assembly and the Senate! The bill now goes to Gov. Andrew Cuomo for his signature.   

Tracy Coppola, an attorney with Born Free USA, explained, "The final version of the bill prohibits possessing, bartering, selling or offering to sell or barter bear gallbladders/bile unless the gallbladder or bile also is attached to a valid bear hunting tag.

"Possession of bear gallbladder/bile without a tag is evidence of a violation and is punishable with a minimum $5,000 fine. Because only one bear may be legally hunted a year, lawful hunters are limited to trade only one bear gallbladder/bile product each year. Anyone without a lawfully acquired tag will be fully prohibited from participating in the trade and prosecuted. Compared with the previous lack of any restriction, this is an improvement."

Coppola continued, "We also fought hard for the inclusion of a provision that requires taxidermists to keep detailed registries of gallbladders/bile trade and to provide those records annually to the Department of Environmental Conservation.

"These requirements will help law enforcement officers track movement of bear parts and prosecute unscrupulous profiteers. And it will help us track the bear parts trade within the state." 

For more on this practice and the bill’s history, read Animal Law Coalition’s report below.

Original report: Though illegal in most states, the trade in bear gallbladders and bile or derivative products, is still legal in New York. Assembly Member Linda Rosenthal and state Sen. Mark Grisanti hope to change that with A.B. 6291 /S.B. 3858.

Under this bill, it would be illegal in New York "to possess, sell or barter, offer to sell or barter, purchase, transport, deliver, or receive, bear gallbladders, bile", or derivatives or products including them. There would be a minimum $1,000 fine per violation.

The commercial trade in bear gallbladders and bile threatens bear populations not only in New York, but worldwide. Poachers killing bears for gallbladders and bile in states where it is illegal are hard to catch: the poachers simply claim they got the gallbladders and bile in New York. New York has become a laundering center for illegally obtained bear gallbladders and bile.

For more information, find a fact sheet attached below as well as a letter Animal Law Coalition has submitted to New York legislators in support of the bill.

Is the Soon to be Released GAO Report Compromised?

horses"Unwanted Horse" Producer Pfizer Sponsors Teleconference to Promote Compromised GAO Report

Chicago (EWA) – A long overdue Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on the effect of closing the US horse slaughter plants is scheduled for release on Wednesday, June 22. Although the report’s contents are to be kept confidential until released,  slaughter supporters have been indicating for months that they were leaked the report and have now orchestrated an "Unwanted Horse" teleconference late in the day of the release presumably to promote the report’s findings.

The teleconference, called "Ask a Vet" is being presented by The Horse, the magazine of the American Veterinary Medical Association, a long term supporter of horse slaughter, and features veterinarian Tom Lenz the former Chair of the American Horse Council’s "Unwanted Horse Coalition (UHC)".

The UHC, supposedly founded to propose solutions to the excess horse problem, has instead concentrated on promoting the phrase "unwanted horse" to take the focus off of over production, which slaughter actually encourages, and imply slaughter horses are somehow unusable except as meat. (A USDA study has long disputed this, showing more than 92% of horses that end up at slaughter are healthy; slaughter is driven by a demand for horsemeat, sold as a pricey delicacy in some other countries).

Pfizer Pharmaceuticals sponsoring a teleconference on solutions to the "unwanted horse" problem is beyond brazen. Pfizer owns Wythe Pharmaceuticals, the producer of a line of hormone replacement therapy drugs made from pregnant mare urine and is one of the largest producers of excess, poorly bred and untrained foals in North America.

Every year, Wythe contracts farms to breed tens of thousands of mares so that their urine can be collected to make the drugs. Not only does this process create thousands of excess foals, the drug was found to have devastating health effects on women during a 2002 study by the National Institutes of Health. The company responded by diluting the drug and renaming it.

Viewed as a tactic to stall legislation to ban horse slaughter, the report was requested by Congressional Senate members opposing a ban in the 111th Congress (2009-2010). Slaughter opponents point out that the closings did not reduce the number of American horses being slaughtered, and therefore could not have affected the horse industry. USDA statistics show the same numbers of horses being bought for slaughter at US auctions now as before the closings, with the only difference being where they are slaughtered.

It was a rude surprise when horse slaughter lobbyist Charles Stenholm spoke at a January conference to promote horse slaughter and strongly hinted that the report would be good for their position. This was followed in a letter sent to all members of Congress by slaughter promoter, Sue Wallis, in which she begged members to delay any votes until the GAO report was released.

When Steve Long, editor of Horseback Magazine, inquired to the GAO about the leak, he was told they were aware the report had leaked, but that he could not see it until the June 22nd. This was almost immediately followed by a denial of the leak from a higher official.

Long told EWA, "It was astonishing that the top press flak at GAO was so unsophisticated he denied his own spokesperson confirmed there was a leak. Generally Washington spokesmen are much more savvy than that and know many reporters tape interviews."

Executives of the EWA and Animal Law Coalition provided information to the GAO lead investigator Terry Horner, but when rumors of the leaks emerged, EWA’s John Holland found Horner had effectively disappeared. "Email to Mr. Horner went unanswered, and when I tried to call his office I was given a message that he would be unavailable until June. In June calls resulted in a message that the number was unassigned even though it was still in the directory", said Holland.

The GAO has maintained a reputation for independence and fairness, making the leaking of the report and the implied bias of those who prepared it a potential scandal.


Go here for information about the bill proposed in this Congress to ban horse slaughter for human consumption and how you can help pass it.