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Pressure mounts for New Zealand to follow EU animal testing ban

By Chris BARKER , 30-Jul-2013

Pressure mounts for New Zealand to follow EU animal testing ban

With recent bans on animal testing in cosmetics in Europe and India, a movement to pass similar laws in New Zealand is picking up speed.  

New Zealand animal advocacy organization SAFE has teamed up with Human Society International to campaign to get animal cosmetics testing closed down.

An amendment to the country's Animal Welfare Act, which controls animal testing and allows companies to perform experiments providing they can prove that it is necessary, is currently under review in Parliament. SAFE claims the bill will "take New Zealand backwards."

Public opinion is also beginning to be swayed to the activists' side, with mass protests anticipated following the failure of the Psychoactive Substances Act to include an animal welfare clause.   

SAFE campaign manager Mandy Carter said that, with recent bans on animal testing by Europe, Israel and India, New Zealand is “Lagging behind the times” on cosmetics testing.

Petition

On July 25,  SAFE and Humane Society International presented a 15,600-strong petition to parliament protesting against the use of animal testing in cosmetics, complete with satirical placards depicting Prime Minister John Key as a rabbit and slogans urging him to “hop to” a new law against the practise.

SAFE campaign manager Mandy Carter said: Are we less ethical than other parts of the world? It is absolutely clear that people do not want to see animals subjected to cruel and unnecessary tests for the sake of trivial and frivolous means and that this must be enshrined in law.”

Recreational drugs protests

Mass marches by animal lovers across New Zealand are expected on July 30 in protest against the failure of the The Psychoactive Substances Law to include an animal testing ban.

The Psychoactive Substances Law was recently brought into force as a way of regulating synthetic highs and party pills in New Zealand. The law requires manufacturers to prove their products are safe or pose only a low risk to consumers before being able to sell them in New Zealand.

The Green party had added an amendment to the bill which would have forbidden the testing of legal highs on animals, but were voted down. 

Dare to go bare

Earlier this month, SAFE also launched “Cruelty Free Week”, a campaign in which they encouraged New Zealand women to go without makeup to protest against the use of animal testing.

Kiwi stars Angela Bloomfield, Suzanne Paul and Ruby Higgins participated in the event, which used the slogan “Dare to Go Bare.”

The SAFE claims that well-known industry names such L’Oreal and Avon are continuing to perform animal testing for products sold in New Zealand.

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