Friday, May 12, 2017

Successes This Week

I have exciting news! Recently, the U.S. Coast Guard confirmed that it had suspended the use of animals in invasive trauma training courses pending an internal review. Previously, during these courses pigs and goats were shot and stabbed.

California Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard has been a strong leader on this effort, urging the Coast Guard to replace animal use. She even announced the news in a recent op-ed.

But while the Coast Guard is taking a closer look at its practices, the other military services continue to use thousands of animals each year in invasive training courses—even though human-relevant methods exist. But there's a bill in Congress that addresses this issue—the BEST Practices Act.

Please ask your representative to co-sponsor the BEST Practices Act by e-mailing today.

State-of-the-art human-relevant training methods like the Cut Suit (pictured above) can provide better training than the military's current use of goats and pigs.

With your help, we will modernize military medical training and end this cruel animal use. Thank you for your help.

Believe it or not, up until only a few years ago, operating on and then killing pigs, goats, and sheep—and even homeless dogs—was a routine part of many medical trauma training courses. Although there are still some institutions that continue to use such archaic methods—hurting and killing animals to train students—in just the last few weeks, PETA's international affiliates' campaigns to end those crude and deadly practices have taken a long stride forward.
In a monumental victory, the U.S. Coast Guard just announced that it has become the first branch of the American military to suspend the shooting, stabbing, and killing of animals in trauma training drills. The Coast Guard will take time to study human simulators and other non-animal training methods that PETA U.S. has recommended. This wonderful news follows pressure from PETA U.S. and its ally, U.S. Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard, and the Coast Guard has confirmed that the moratorium came into effect after a PETA U.S. eyewitness exposé prompted an official review by the agency.
PETA Australia is also gaining ground in its efforts to end deadly trauma training on animals. The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) announced that it, too, is ending its use of animals for trauma training. This decision comes after an extensive, nearly four-year-long campaign by PETA Australia, PETA U.S., and Humane Research Australia, during which thousands of people sent e-mails to RACS officials through online action alerts, more than 100,000 people signed a PETA Australia petition, thought-provoking ads and protests featuring numerous outspoken "pigs" made headlines across Australia, and medical experts from PETA U.S. negotiated with the college.
And, thanks to a donation of simulators from PETA U.S., Bangladesh, Ghana, Jamaica, and Kenya are the latest countries to ban the use of animals in surgical trauma training. We are excited to report that this brings the number of countries that have ended the cruel use of animals for Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) training to 20, sparing thousands of animals every year! While state-of-the-art human-patient simulators are now the standard for ATLS training in many countries, a number of nations have yet to make the switch—often simply because they lack the financial resources to do so. That's why PETA U.S. has donated more than 100 TraumaMan simulators, valued at nearly HKD20 million, to national ATLS training programs around the globe. Since 2014, these donations of innovative simulators—which replicate breathing, bleeding human torsos—have helped replace the use of animals in courses from Panama to Pakistan. PETA's international affiliates are making medical history and moving medical training away from a hideous dependence on animals.

While there is still a great deal of work to be done to end the use of animals in training and experimentation, so much progress in a matter of weeks shows how much caring people can accomplish in making the world a kinder place for animals.
Maryland Stops Cruel Ray 'Killing Contests' -- Thank You

Cownose rays

Thanks to work by the Save the Rays coalition -- including the Center -- as well as online petitions from thousands of Center supporters, Maryland's governor has signed a bill halting "killing contests" in Chesapeake Bay that target cownose rays, amazing but imperiled animals that migrate in huge schools along the Atlantic Coast.

"I'm so glad Maryland stopped these brutal contests allowing gentle rays to be shot and left to rot," said Center attorney Collette Adkins. "Thank you to all who helped oppose this senseless slaughter -- you made a difference." Read more.

1 Million Acres in California Saved From Oil Drilling, Fracking
We're celebrating an important victory this week in California: Legal work by the Center for Biological Diversity and allies has just stopped the Trump administration from opening more than 1 million acres of public land to drilling and fracking.

Our newest settlement preserves a four-year-old moratorium on leasing federal land in California to oil companies. It protects vast stretches of the Central Valley, southern Sierra Nevada and Central Coast -- vital habitat for condors and other endangered species. This win comes at a crucial moment as Trump and his friends in Congress try to ramp up fossil fuel extraction across the country.

"This is a major blow to Trump's plan to turn public lands over to oil companies," said the Center's Brendan Cummings. "These beautiful wild places are still off-limits to drilling and fracking."

Read more in our press release.