Rep. Roybal-Allard Helps Introduce Bill to Increase Transparency about Federal Animal Testing
Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40) is an original cosponsor of H.R. 816, the bipartisan Federal Accountability in Chemical Testing (FACT) Act, which would improve government agencies’ reporting about their progress to replace inaccurate, multimillion-dollar animal tests with faster, less costly, and more effective alternative methods for assessing the safety of chemicals, drugs, foods, cosmetics, and other substances. Among the agencies covered by the act are the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Congresswoman Roybal-Allard introduced the bill alongside Congressmembers Mike Bishop (MI-08), Vern Buchanan (FL-16), Ken Calvert (CA-42), Tom Marino (PA-10), Betty McCollum (MN-04), Ed Royce (CA-39), and Dina Titus (NV-01).
“I am proud to help introduce the FACT Act so that Congress and taxpayers will know if government agencies are meeting their mandate to replace animal tests with more effective and humane test methods,” said Rep. Roybal-Allard. “During my time in Congress, I have secured vital increases in transparency and accountability about federally funded experiments on dogs, monkeys, chimps and other animals, and the FACT Act is the latest step in that effort.”
“Rep. Roybal-Allard has a long history of exposing and ending unnecessary taxpayer-funded animal experiments and the FACT Act is more common-sense, nonpartisan legislation that everyone can get behind,” said Justin Goodman, Vice President at the White Coat Waste Project. “Taxpayers have a right to know how their money is spent and if it’s being wasted on cruel and outdated animal tests that federal agencies admit are ineffective.”
Federal laws, including last year’s widely supported amendments to the Toxic Substances Control Act, mandate that agencies minimize animal tests they conduct or require in favor of high-tech cell-based tests and sophisticated computer models. However, federal agencies do not currently report how many animals are used and for what purposes they are used. That lack of information makes it impossible for Congress to assess the effectiveness of programs designed to replace wasteful animal tests. The FACT Act would require that this information be reported.
A recent review by the non-profit White Coat Waste Project, which is endorsing the FACT Act, found that government agencies are conducting hundreds of animal tests on cosmetics ingredients, foods, natural supplements, tobacco products, industrial chemicals, and drugs using mice, rats, rabbits, dogs, monkeys, and other animals.