MPs vote in favour of animal cruelty

Politicians have voted against an amendment that would have ruled out the use of data from animal testing for party pill recreational drugs. National MPs and United Future's Peter Dunne blocked the proposed amendment to the Psychoactive Substances Bill that would have prohibited any animal testing.

Campaign manager Mandy Carter says the vote was shameful. "The profits of drug dealers have effectively been put ahead of animals' lives. New Zealand says it aims to be a world leader in animal welfare but in actual fact we are legalising animal cruelty for the sake of testing recreational drugs - something that other places such as the United Kingdom have banned."

Clauses have been put into the act stating that animal tests have to be kept to a minimum but Ms Carter says this will be ineffectual.

"While these clauses sound promising they will have no effect whatsoever because it is spelt out quite clearly that animal testing is allowed. This decision is truly shocking given the many sound alternative testing methods available." Ms Carter said the government heard from over 70 thousand New Zealanders who signed a petition calling for testing of party pills on animals to be banned. The select committee also ignored submissions on the testing of party pills on animals.

The Green Party introduced the amendment, which was supported by SAFE. Mojo Mathers MP has previously said "We have not seen any evidence to indicate that we need to allow animal testing of recreational drugs. In fact, the evidence we have seen shows that all the proposed animal tests can be replaced with modern and effective non-animal tests".

SAFE will be lobbying MPs on this issue as part of the upcoming review of the Animal Welfare Act, and will demand that a ban is written into the legislation.

10 July 2013