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ANIMAL EXPERIMENTS RATED AS 'UNSCIENTIFIC' BY YOUNG PEOPLE
Posted 1 May 1998
The majority of young people in Britain are convinced that animal experiments cannot be trusted, according to a new opinion poll commissioned by pressure group Animal Aid.
The revelation comes in the run-up to Animal Aid's Animal Pride campaign, which aims to redefine animal rights for the new millennium. The campaign is launched on June 2 with a 10 day art show at the Slaughterhouse Gallery - a former abattoir at the heart of London's Smithfield Market.
The nationwide NOP poll questioned members of the public on a number of animal issues. The results reveal that 49% of 15 to 24 year olds and 50% of 25 to 34 year olds believe that 'the information and results obtained from animal experiments cannot be reliably applied to people'. These figures represent a majority of those who expressed an opinion - 6% of those questioned were unsure.
Said Animal Aid Director Andrew Tyler,
"This poll will dismay pro-vivisection scientists, who have long been convinced that public opposition to animal experiments was due, almost exclusively, to the suffering involved. The myth that we must choose between our children's future and laboratory rats is finally being dispelled. The consistent failure of animal-tested 'wonder drugs' to deliver their promised cures is helping to swing public opinion. Medical science must now direct itself towards humane research which does not involve pointlessly torturing and killing millions of animals every year."
The poll also shows that 60% of the population believe that 'animals suffer at the time of slaughter'. This figure rises to 76% amongst the 15 to 24 year old age range. 42% of young people of this age believe a vegetarian diet to be healthier than one which includes meat.
Andrew Tyler explained,
"These results demonstrate that a majority of the public recognises the cruelty involved in meat production - and also that a large number are convinced that a diet without any meat in it is the healthiest. This is despite multi-million pound advertising campaigns by the meat trade pushing the reverse case. It is little wonder that more than 5,000 people turn vegetarian every week."
A massive 86% of those surveyed were in full support of the Animal Pride declaration. This states,
"All animals have the right to a life free from cruelty and abuse."
The declaration has already been signed by, among others,Julian Clary, Chris Evans, Bruce Forsyth, Sally Gunnell, and Trevor Nunn.
Said Mr. Tyler,
"Our opinion poll results confirm that animal rights is becoming a mainstream concern. Animal Pride takes animal rights into the next century. Its aim is to demolish the artificial barrier that has been erected between campaigners for animal rights and the millions of compassionate people in this country. Through our new campaign, animal rights is coming in from the cold."
Notes to Editors
- More information: Andrew Tyler, Becky Smith, Mary Shephard on 01732 364546. After hours: 0421 326329.
- Please click here for more results of the NOP Opinion Poll.
- Animal Pride is launched with a media and celebrity reception between 16.30 and 18.00 on Tuesday, 2 June at the Slaughterhouse Gallery, 63 Charterhouse Street, London EC1. A brand new Animal Pride film will be screened, featuring interviews with Daily Mail proprietor Lord Rothermere, Brian Sewell, Jilly Cooper, Uri Geller, Tony Banks MP and Spike Milligan. A new interactive CD Rom and a fresh document explaining Animal Pride will also be launched.
- The Animal Pride Art Show will be open to the public from June 3rd - 13th (excluding Sunday 7th). Opening times are 11 am to 6 pm, and entrance is free. Among the art works on display will be two signed photographs by the late Linda McCartney, as well as images by 17 winners of the 1997 BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Other contributors include David Shepherd, Sue Coe, Nicola Hicks, Sandra Baxter, Ray Richardson and Robin Grierson.