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Founder’s Message to Laboratory Personnel

Why I formed Primates Incorporated:
A Message to Laboratory Employees

I worked in a lab with 97 rhesus monkeys for five years and got to know their personalities and intelligence. The lab got millions for testing on the monkeys but management was against sending them to sanctuary even though the monkeys were in a non-terminal study. In response to Primates Incorporated achieving its nonprofit status, one research Veterinarian said sending monkeys to sanctuary was too “animal rightsy” for her tastes. Since I knew other labs were already sending monkeys to sanctuaries but often getting rejected for capacity and funding issues,  I felt I had to resign and press on to help monkeys achieve sanctuary. I continue to this day volunteering for Primates Incorporated and do all that I can do make a difference for rhesus monkeys.

Monkeys from laboratories should be sent to sanctuaries whenever possible – and the researchers who want to plan to send them to sanctuaries should be supported and given the resources to do so. Primate researchers and laboratory caregivers out there: please keep pushing for change by referring to the labs who do send monkeys to sanctuary and interview those labs about the improvement of morale for their employees. There are many excuses not to send on – including lack of sanctuary space and funding – please be the person who dedicates time to increase funding resources, help sanctuaries, and change policy. The resources and policy changes are in your hands. Thank you.

Amy Kerwin, M.B.A.

Founder, Primates Incorporated