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NEWS RELEASE September 27, 2006

Chandler Residents Get a Grim Look at Covance's Cruel Treatment of Animals

Local Physician Deborah Wilson and PCRM Release DVD to 23,000 Registered Voters

CHANDLER, Ariz.—Chandler residents will be able to see for themselves what happens inside laboratories run by Covance. The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) mailed DVDs featuring undercover video footage of animal abuse at Covance facilities to more than 23,000 registered voters in Chandler. PCRM member Deborah Wilson, M.D., a Valley gynecologist and laparoscopic surgeon, introduces the video and urges viewers to “Say no to Covance.”

PCRM’s DVD features undercover video footage of animal abuse by Covance employees inside two Covance testing facilities: one in Vienna, Va., and the other in Munster, Germany. Among the animal abuse shown: a monkey whose arm appears to have been broken while struggling to avoid the technician who was about to inflict agonizing test procedures on the monkey; workers striking and choking monkeys who are struggling to escape from their grip; workers screaming curses at frightened monkeys; small monkeys having large tubes forced up their nostrils and down into their stomach; and workers draining blood from monkeys who had been killed.

“Covance abuses animals in horrific ways,” says Mindy Kursban, Esq., PCRM’s executive director. “We believe Chandler residents have a right to know what Covance will be doing in their neighborhood if the City Council allows this facility to be built. The City Council and residents have an opportunity to stop this. No animal should die to test a new ingredient for lipstick.”

Covance, which tests a variety of toxic substances, including pesticides, cosmetic ingredients, and food additives, on monkeys, dogs, cats, and other animals, is seeking approval from the Chandler City Council to build a huge new animal experimentation facility on a 38-acre site on Price Road. This facility will likely include an incinerator to dispose of toxic animal carcasses. Although Covance sometimes portrays itself as a drug development laboratory, the company actually performs toxicity testing on contract.

More than 1,300 Chandler residents have signed statements of opposition to the Covance facility, in part because the federal government recently fined Covance for violating the Animal Welfare Act. Last month, PCRM uncovered U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection reports from last year showing violations of the Animal Welfare Act at five other Covance facilities around the country.

Founded in 1985, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is a nonprofit health organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research.

Media Contact:
Patrick Sullivan

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