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Shaheen, Bipartisan Senators Introduce Bill to Help Retired Government Laboratory Animals Find Loving Homes

(Washington, DC) — Today, U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Susan Collins (R-ME), Gary Peters (D-MI) and Martha McSally (R-AZ) introduced the Animal Freedom from Testing, Experimentation and Research (AFTER) Act.  The bipartisan bill would direct all federal agencies to develop and maintain a policy allowing for the adoption or retirement of dogs, cats, primates, rabbits, and other regulated animals no longer needed for research in federal labs. 

More than 50,000 Animal Welfare Act regulated animals (mainly dogs, cats, monkeys, and rabbits) were used in federal labs in fiscal year 2018.  Currently, since federal agencies do not have policies on adopting or retiring animals that are no longer needed in research, many animals are killed.  The AFTER Act will ensure that every federal agency that uses animals for research has policies in place to facilitate the relocation of retired, healthy lab animals to private homes, animal rescues, or reputable sanctuaries.

“I’m glad to partner with Senators Collins, Peters and McSally on this bill to help ensure we’re making every effort to give retiring animals the opportunity to live out their lives in caring homes,” said Senator Shaheen. “This is common-sense, bipartisan legislation that would strengthen animal welfare protections. I urge members on both sides of the aisle to lend their support.”

Companion legislation was introduced in the House by Representatives Brendan Boyle (PA-02) and Jackie Walorski (IN-02).

Click HERE for the text of the AFTER Act.